Saturday, September 13, 2014

Surname Saturday ~ WINTHROP of England and Massachusetts

The first known Winthrop in this line was Adam Winthrop, son of Adam Winthrop and Joane Burton, who was apprenticed in London for ten years.  He was a clothier, and a member of the Clothworker’s Company of London.  He was later elected Sheriff of London.

In 1543 he served time in Fleet Prison “for disobeying the wardens in the search because that he would not suffer them to carry the cloth out of his house”.  Adam was not released from Fleet until he paid a 600 pound fine.  In 1544 he bought a manor house in Groton and became “Lord of the Manor” .  King Edward VI granted him arms and the rank of Gentleman in 1544.  This was passed on to his son John Winthrop.   I descend from the youngest son, the third Adam Winthrop in this line.

This Adam was also a clothier in London.  He was made master of the Clothworker’s Company in 1551.  When his brother John went to Ireland in 1594 he became the Lord of the Manor at Groton.  His papers were preserved in the British Museum as “The Winthrop Papers”.  Adam and his second wife are buried at St. Bartholomew’s Church.   Adam’s only son, John Winthrop (1588 – 1649) was the first governor of the Massachusetts Bay Colony, and came to New England on board the ship Arbella in 1630. There were a total of eleven ships that came that summer with the Arbella, and these ships carried about 800 Puritan immigrants known as “The Winthrop Fleet”.

Governor John Winthrop’s youngest sister, Lucy (1601-1679) came to the New World in 1638 on board the ship Thomas and Francis with her husband, Emanuel Downing and settled in Salem, Massachusetts.  They returned to England in 1645 when her husband became a spy for Cromwell.  Downing was appointed to be Minister to Holland under Cromwell, and later Council of State for Scotland under the King Charles.  He died in Scotland, and Lucy went to live with her son, Sir George Downing, in London.  George lived at Number 10 Downing Street, which later became the Prime Minister’s residence.

Lucy Winthrop Downing was my 10th great grandmother, and the end of my Winthrop line.  Her daughter, Lucy Downing (1625- 1697) was born in Salem, Massachusetts and married Bonus Norton.  They were my 9th great grandparents.

The Winthrop Papers are online at 

The Lion and the Hare: Being the Graphic Pedigree of over one thousand Descendants of John Winthrop, 1588 – 1649, by Ellery Kirk Taylor, Ann Arbor Michigan, 1939

Notes On the Winthrop Family: And Its English Connections Before Its Emigration to New England, by William Henry Whitmore, Albany NY, 1864

The Winthrop Family in America, by the Massachusetts Historical Society, 1948

My Winthrop Genealogy:

Generation 1: Adam Winthrop married to Joane Burton

Generation 2: Adam Winthrop, born on 9 October 1498 in Levenam, Suffolk, England, died on 9 November 1562;  married first on 20 July 1534 to Agnes Sharpe; married second to Alice Hunne.

Generation 3: Adam Winthrop, baptized on 10 August 1548 at St. Peter’s Parish in Levenam,  died on 28 March 1623 in Groton, Suffolk, England;  married first on 20 February 1579 to Anne Browne; married second to Alice Still.

Generation 4: Lucy Winthrop, born on 9 January 1601, died on 1679 in England; married on 10 April 1622 in Groton to Emanuel Downing.  He was the son of George Downing and Dorcas Bellamy baptized on  12 August 1585 in St. Lawrence Parish, Ipswich, Suffolk, England, and died on 26 July 1658 in Scotland. Five children.

Generation 5: Lucy Downing m.  William Norton
Generation 6:  Bonus Norton m. Mary Goodhue
Generation 7:  Elizabeth Norton m. Benjamin Swett
Generation 8:  Elizabeth Swett m. David Batchelder
Generation 9:  Elisha Batchelder m. Sarah Lane
Generation 10: Jonathan Batchelder m. Nancy Thompson
Generation 11:  George E. Batchelder m. Abigail M. Locke
Generation 12:  George E. Batchelder m. Mary Katharine Emerson
Generation 13:  Carrie Maude Batchelder m. Joseph Elmer Allen
Generation 14:  Stanley Elmer Allen m. Gertrude Matilda Hitchings (my grandparents)

The URL for this post is

Copyright © 2014, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

Thursday, September 11, 2014

The New Hampshire Historical Society- Library and Museum

The New Hampshire Historical Society Library is located at 30 Park Street in Concord, New Hampshire.  This is a premier spot for genealogical research, since the New Hampshire State Library is located right next door, and the Concord city public library is across the street!  You can hop from one library to the other easily if you need to look at different types of documents. The New Hampshire state vital records are a short drive away, too, at 71 Fruit Street.  

 This library is open Tuesdays through Saturdays, 9:30 am to 5pm.  You can call ahead and speak to one of the reference librarians and they will pull materials for you and have them ready for your visit. The card catalog is available online, and there are finding aids online, too. Non-members must pay a $7 day fee to use the research room. Full time students are free, and service members, veterans and their families are free from Memorial Day to Labor Day (courtesy of the MetLife Foundation through Blue Star Families).   Fellowships for research projects are also available.

I have found some wonderful genealogical resources here.  There are records from all over New England, but of course, a plethora of stuff from New Hampshire. Check out the manuscript collections, because in the days before internet I never expected to find much but while browsing the old card catalog I found a  Wilkinson genealogy done by a distant cousin in the 1920s.  What serendipity!  There are also maps, town histories, and other goodies.

The New Hampshire Historical Society Library reading room

Items pulled from the library for the LOCKE family reunion 2013

If you can't get to the library in person, the staff can do research for you.  Research services are available online, by telephone or mail.  You can reach the staff at 603-856-9641 or at the research services web page  

This gorgeous building was constructed in 1911 and financed by Edward Tuck (1842 - 1938).  It is a few blocks from exit 14 of Route 93, right across the street from the state capital building. Entrance to the building and the exhibits are free, the only charge is for non-members using the research room.  

The New Hampshire Historical Society Hamel Center is located a few blocks away from the library at 6 Eagle Square.  This building was the museum until earlier this year, and now serves as the collections management center.  Current exhibits are now in the library building, and there are always several online exhibitions at the website     There is also a link to the online catalog of museum collections for objects and finding aids for these images. 

New Hampshire Historical Society website
phone 603-856-0625

The URL for this post is

Copyright (c) 2014, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Weathervane Wednesday ~ Seen in Gloucester, Massachusetts

Every Wednesday for more than three years we have been posting photographs of weather vanes located in or near the Nutfield area (the former name for the land where Londonderry, Derry and Windham, New Hampshire are now located). Most are historically interesting or just whimsical and fun weather vanes. Today's weather vane can be found in Gloucester, Massachusetts. Have fun guessing where you may have seen this weather vane.

Do you know the location of weather vane #173? Scroll down to see the answer....

This interesting weather vane was seen atop a chimney at the very large Beauport Mansion in Gloucester, Massachusetts.  Today this is a museum house operated by Historic New England.  It is the former home of Henry Davis Sleeper, built beginning in 1907.  Construction lasted 27 years on this house. Sleeper was a collector of Americana, early American furnishings, and he was an interior decorator, so the additions to the mansion went on and on over decades.  This weather vane might have been part of his collection, since it is very similar to the one pictured below.

This second version of the same type of weather vane was photographed at the Shelburne Museum in Vermont.  It is from about 1880, and shows the same image of a Native American attacking a mountain lion.  The card from the museum describes the mythology of the image.  This myth is supposed to be an American version of St. George and the Dragon, or perhaps Heracles slaying the lion. 

Beauport, The Sleeper-McCann House in Gloucester, Massachusetts:

The Shelburne Museum 


The URL for this post is

Copyright (c) 2014, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Tombstone Tuesday ~ John Emerson and Elizabeth French of Chester, New Hampshire

These gravestones were photographed at the Chester Village Cemetery, Chester, New Hampshire

April 3, 1844

wife of 
July 15, 1852
Aged 90 yrs, 7 mos.
& 5 days

John Emerson was voted the assistant town clerk of Chester in 1787, and his father, Samuel Emerson had been town clerk since 1784.  You can see their handwriting in the town records of Chester, New Hampshire.   John Emerson served in the American Revolutionary War by enlisting in Capt. Joseph Dearborn's company, Colonel Moses Nichol's regiment.  

The Emerson Genealogy:

Generation 1: Michael Emerson; born in Cadney, England, died after 24 November 1715 in Haverhill, Massachusetts; married on 1 April 1657 in Haverhill to Hannah Webster, daughter of John Webster and Mary Shatswell.

Generation 2:  Jonathan Emerson; born on 9 March 1669/70 in Haverhill,, died 19 August 1736 in Haverhill; married on 15 June 1699 in Haverhill to Hannah Day, daughter of John Day and Sarah Pengrey.

Generation 3:  Samuel Emerson, born on 8 Jan 1707/8, died 26 September 1793 in Chester, New Hampshire;  married on 25 November 1754 in Chester to Dolly Sanborn, daughter of Samuel Sanborn and Elizabeth Folsom. He was previously married to Sarah Ayer.

Generation 4:  John Emerson, born on 13 August 1757 in Chester, died 3 April 1844 in Chester; married to Elizabeth French, daughter of Nathaniel French.   She died on 15 July 1852 in Chester, New Hampshire.

For more information:

A blog post about a descendant from this family who went to Hawaii as a missionary: 

The tombstones of Samuel Emerson and Dolly Dearborn  

The URL for this post is

Copyright (c) 2014, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

Monday, September 8, 2014

Is your Ancestor on the Sea Venture Monument, St. George, Bermuda?

In 2009 Bermuda celebrated the 400th anniversary of the shipwreck of the Sea Venture.  In 1609 Sir George Somers and his company wrecked on a reef off Bermuda.  They were headed to Jamestown, but instead started a British settlement on Bermuda while they used the wood of the Sea Venture to build two smaller ships to continue their trip to Virginia.   The two new ships were the Deliverance and the Patience, and they were able to bring much needed food supplies to the starving, dying colonists at Jamestown.

The Sea Venture Memorial was unveiled in 2010.  This monument is a wooden cross mounted on a concrete column.  The shipwreck victims had originally built a wooden cross to claim Bermuda for England and King James I.   The monument has a plaque with the 50 confirmed names of the shipwreck survivors.  It is estimated that there were 150 sailors and settlers, and one dog, aboard the Sea Venture.   From this spot you can see the reefs where the wreck occurred, and you can also see Gates Bay where the survivors landed on Bermuda to start the new colony.

In 1958 Edmund Downing found the Sea Venture shipwreck in 30 feet of water off St. George.  The Smithsonian in Washington DC sent Mendel Peterson to verify the site.  They measured the timbers and unearthed a jug, pipe and vase to confirm that this was indeed the Sea Venture.

Here is a list of the survivor's names on the Monument:

Virginia Company Officers
           Lt. Thomas Gates
           Admiral Sir George Somers
           Captain Christopher Martin
           Rev. Richard Bucke
           Mistress Maria Thorowgood Bucke
           Mr. Thomas Whitingham

           Ralph Amour
           Mistress Horten
           Silvester Jordain, Esq.
           Henry Paine, Esq
           Capt. William Pierce
           Richard Rich, Esq.
           Samuel Shaw, Esq.
           Henry Shelley, Esq
           William Strachney, Esq.
           James Swift, Esq.
           Capt. George Yeardley, aide to Thomas Gates

           Henry Bagwell
           Humphrey Blount
           Jeffrey Briars
           Joseph Chard
           Edward Eason & Mistress Eason & baby Bermudas
           George Graves
           Thomas Godby
           William Hitchman
           Stephen Hopkins
           Elizabeth Jones
           Richard Lewis
           John Lytefoot
           Elizabeth Karson
           John Proctor
           Humphrey Reede
           John Rolfe & Mistress Rolfe & baby girl Bermuda

           Edward Waters
           Henry Ravens
           Robert Walsingham
           Richard Frobisher
           Nicholas Bennit
           Thomas Powell
           William Bryan
           Edward Chard
           Richard Knowles
           William Martin
           Francis Pearepoint
           Edward Samuel
           John Want
           Robert Waters
           Christopher Carter        

Some of the names on this monument are well known in American history.  Stephen Hopkins survived the shipwreck and then went on to be a colonist in Jamestown.  He returned to England and later was a passenger on the Mayflower to Plymouth, Massachusetts in 1620.   John Rolfe lost his wife and baby girl, Bermuda, on the island of Bermuda but went on to Jamestown and married Pocahontas in April 1614.  Other shipwreck survivors went on to be famous in Bermuda history.  Sir Thomas Gates was the Governor for the Virginia colony.  Christopher Carter has many descendants still living on the island of Bermuda.

YouTube video of the dedication ceremony of the Sea Venture monument, where descendants read the names of the survivors inscribed on the plaques: project for descendants of the Sea Venture shipwreck, 1609   

The URL for this post is

Copyright (c) 2014, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

Saturday, September 6, 2014

Surname Saturday ~ GOODHUE of Ipswich, Massachusetts


I don’t know much about William Goodhue (1612 – 1699), my 9th great grandfather, which is sad because I descend from all three of his children.  I don’t know his English ancestry, nor do I know when he came to New England.  He settled in Ipswich, Massachusetts and was a freeman on 7 December 1636. He had three children with his wife, Margery Watson, and was married two more times but appears to have had no more children.

William Goodhue was a selectman and deacon of the church in 1658 in Ipswich.  He was a representative to the General Court in 1666 and a few more times after that.  He died in 1699 when he was 86 years old.

The daughter of William Goodhue, Mary, married Thomas Giddings in 1658.

The elder son, Joseph Goodhue, married first to Sarah Whipple in 1661.  She had ten children and then died delivering twins.  In a long letter written to her husband on 14 July 1681 she wrote out her wishes in case of her death at the time of this birth.   I have a transcription of this poignant letter at this blog post:   This letter spells out what should happen to her children and how they should be raised.  It’s a tear jerker.   She must have known it was going to be a difficult pregnancy and that she might not survive.

The youngest son, William Goodhue lived on the family farm in Chebacco Parish.  He was a deacon at the Chebacco Parish church. In 1687 Governor Andros imposed a tax on the people of Massachusetts in violation of their charter, not to be taxed without an assembly’s consent.  The minister of Ipswich and two men, one was William Goodhue, Jr., conferred a town meeting against this tax.  William and five Ipswich men were arrested and jailed in Boston.  The town of Ipswich paid their fines.  In 1704 Ipswich granted William Goodhue land for his losses.  This tax revolt was almost 100 years before the Revolutionary War.

Some GOODHUE sources:

One Hundred and Sixty Allied Families, by John Osborne Austin, Salem, Massachusetts; 1893 (reprinted by the Genealogical Publishing Company in 1977)

History and Genealogy of the Goodhue Family in England and America to the Year 1890, by Reverend Jonathan E. Goodhue, Rochester, NY: 1891.

New England Historic Genealogical Society Register, Volume 112, page 143

A Partial List of the Descendants of Matthew Whipple, the Elder, of Bocking, Essex County, England, by Henry Burdette Whipple, 1965.

My GOODHUE genealogy:

Generation 1: William Goodhue, born about 1612 in England, died 7 September 1699 in the Chebacco Parish of Ipswich, Massachusetts; married first about 1635 to Margery Watson, daughter of Joseph Watson.  She was born about 1612 and died 28 August 1668 in Ipswich; married second on 7 February 1670 to Mary Morton; married third to Bethiah Rea, widow of Captain Thomas Lothrop; married fourth to Remember Gott, widow of John Fisk.  Three children with Margery Watson, and I descend from all three!

Lineage A:

Generation 2:  Mary Goodhue, born about 1637, died before 1685; married on 23 February 1658 in Ipswich to Thomas Giddings as his first wife.  He was born about 1638 and died 19 June 1681 in Ipswich, the son of George Giddings and Jane Lawrence.  Three children.

Generation 3:  William Giddings, died after 1757; married on 19 September 1698 in Lynn, Massachusetts to Sarah Hitchings, the daughter of Daniel Hitchings and Eleanor Unknown (also my 8th great grandparents in another lineage).   Three children.

Generation 4:  Thomas Giddings m. Martha Smith
Generation 5:  Sarah Giddings m. Amos Burnham
Generation 6:  Judith Burnham m. Joseph Allen
Generation 7:  Joseph Allen m. Orpha Andrews
Generation 8: Joseph Gilman Allen m. Sarah Burnham Mears
Generation 9:  Joseph Elmer Allen m. Carrie Maude Batchelder
Generation 10: Stanley Elmer Allen m. Gertrude Matilda Hitchings (my grandparents)

Lineage B:

Generation 2:  Joseph Goodhue, born about 1639 in Ipswich, died 2 September 1697 in Ipswich; married on 13 July 1661 to Sarah Whipple, daughter of John Whipple and Susannah Clark.  She was born 3 November 1641 in Ipswich and died 23 July 1681 in Ipswich. Nine children.  He married second on 4 July 1692 to Mercy Boynton, and had one son.  

Generation 3: Mary Goodhue, born about 1664 in Ipswich, died after 30 April 1719; married Bonus Norton, son of William Norton and Lucy Downing.  He was born about 1657 in Ipswich and died 30 April 1719 in Hampton, New Hampshire. Eight children.

Generation 4:  Elizabeth Norton m. Benjamin Swett
Generation 5:  Elizabeth Swett m. David Batchelder
Generation 6:  Elisha Batchelder m. Sarah Lane
Generation 7: Jonathan Batchelder m. Nancy Thompson
Generation 8: George E. Batchelder m. Abigail M. Locke
Generation 9: George E. Batchelder m. Mary Katharine Emerson
Generation 10: Carried Maude Batchelder m. Joseph Elmer Allen (see above)

Lineage C:

Generation 2:  William Goodhue, born about 1645, died 12 October 1712 in Ipswich; married on 14 November 1666 in Ipswich to Hannah Dane, the daughter of Reverend Francis Dane and Elizabeth Ingalls.  She was born about 1648 in Andover, Massachusetts. Eleven children.

Generation 3: Bethiah Goodhue, born about 1683 in Ipswich, died 28 March 1752 in Ipswich; married after 24 November 1711 in Ipswich to Benjamin Marshall, the son of Benjamin Marshall and Prudence Woodward.  He was born 15 November 1684 in Ipswich, and died 2 October 1747 in the Chebacco Parish.  Five children.

Generation 4: Elizabeth Marshall m. David Burnham
Generation 5: Amos Burnham m. Sarah Giddings (see above)


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Copyright © 2014, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Are you my cousin? Ammi Burnham Young (1798 - 1874)

Views of the Boston Custom House

Did you ever see a historical name in a book or on a plaque and say “That name could be a cousin!”  Did you follow up by researching to see if that name really was a cousin?  That’s me.  I recognize familiar surnames around New England and often wonder if there is a kinship. 

I saw the name Ammi Burnham Young on a brochure about the Boston Custom House and I wondered about his BURNHAM name.  I knew that there were several “Ammi Burnhams” in my family tree.  I have eight BURNHAM lineages from the same two immigrant brothers, and so usually any New England Burnham ends up being a cousin to me.  I was very surprised to read that the architect Ammi Burnham Young (1798 – 1874) was not just a BURNHAM cousin, but I was also related to his FOSTER grandmother, his EMERSON great grandmother, and to both of his PERKINS great great grandmothers. His grand father, Ammi Burnham (1733 – 1785) is my 2nd cousin 7 generations removed. 

When researching famous cousins, it helps if your own family tree includes all the allied branches of your ancestors, their siblings, the siblings spouses, extended family and also their children (your first cousins many generations removed, and also your second cousins many generations removed).  All these branches make it easier to match up to someone with a common ancestor.  

Who was Ammi Burnham Young?  He was born in Lebanon, New Hampshire on 19 June 1798, and his father, Samuel Young, built many civil buildings in Vermont and New Hampshire including churches, court houses and schools.  Ammi  graduated from Dartmouth College and followed in his father’s footsteps.  His two early works were the Vermont Capitol building and the Boston Custom House, which was finished in 1847.  The Custom house was considered Boston’s first skyscraper when a tower was added in 1915 which replaced the original dome designed by Ammi Burnham Young.

US Treasury Building, Washington D.C.
photo by Wikimedia Commons,
After the Boston Custom House, Ammi Burnham Young was in great demand to build civic buildings all over the country.  In 1842 he built the US Treasury Building in Washington, DC (see the back of any $10 bill for an image of this building).  He built dozens of custom houses from Texas to Maine.  Locally in New England he built the courthouses in Worcester , Cambridge and Lowell, Massachusetts, the City Hall in Lawrence, Massachusetts.  In 1853 he supervised the construction of the Territorial Capital Building in Santa Fe, New Mexico.   

Ammi Burnham Young lost out on being the designer of the US Capital Building in Washington DC, and so as a consolation prize he was appointed “Supervising Architect of the US Treasury Department” in 1852.  He produced plans for many of the federal buildings built in Washington DC around the mall to be fire-proof using cast iron and granite.  Some of his custom houses in the southern states built at this time survived the Civil War, and orders by the Army of Northern Virginia to burn the Richmond custom house.  Jefferson Davis was indicted for treason inside the courtroom of this Richmond building in 1866.

Ammi Burnham Young died in Washington DC on 13 March, 1874 and is buried there at the Oak Hill Cemetery.

PDF of an article from the Bulletin for the Society for the Preservation of New England Antiquities, “Architechtural Projects in the Greek Revival Style by Ammi Burnham Young” by Lawrence Wodehouse, Volume LX, Number 3, January – March 1970, pages 73 – 85.

The URL for this post is

Copyright ©2014, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Weathervane Wednesday ~ Seen on the Turnpike

Every Wednesday for more than three years I've been posting photographs of weather vanes located in or near the Nutfield area (the former name for the land where Londonderry, Derry and Windham, New Hampshire are now located). Most are historically interesting or just whimsical and fun weather vanes. Today's weather vane can be found in along a famous New England roadway. Have fun guessing where you may have seen this weather vane.

Do you know the location of weather vane #172? Scroll down to see the answer....

Today's weather vane was seen on the Massachusetts Turnpike, at the eastbound Lee rest area, located 10.3 miles from the New York border.  The tourist information center, which was closed and appeared to have been shuttered for a long time, has a cupola with this very interesting weather vane.  It is a highly detailed, three dimensional antique automobile.  The Massachusetts Turnpike dates from 1948 when the first plans were laid out, and construction began in 1955 on the Turnpike, but this little automobile seems to represent an even earlier era.

The URL for this post is 

Copyright  (c)2014, Heather Wilkinson Rojo