Thursday, March 21, 2019

Throwback Thursday - 1979 High School Graduation

Here I have more photo slides we have recently scanned and digitized. These slides, although they are older than the first few "Throwback Thursday" photos I posted, are in nicer shape, not deteriorated and the color is still true.  These were Kodak film and processing, and not Seattle Filmworks. My Dad shot them with a pocket sized Kodak instamatic using a cartridge of 110 film. That probably accounts for the graininess of the images.

I graduated from Wachusett Regional High School in Holden, Massachusetts in 1979.  We were a big class of baby boomers, with about 500 in the graduating class from the towns of Holden, Paxton, Princeton, Rutland and Sterling.  There aren't many photos of my graduation.

The girls wore white robes, the boys wore dark green,
the colors of the "Mountaineers"

It looks like my Dad got up behind the stage for this shot.
The ceremony was held on the football field.

I became a high school graduate here!

The ubiquitous photo in front of the flowering mountain laurel.
Our neighborhood was full of mountain laurel
and every May and June lots of family photos were posed here
for Mother's Day, First Communions, Proms,
and Graduations!


Heather Wilkinson Rojo, "Throwback Thursday - 1979 High School Graduation", Nutfield Genealogy, posted March 21, 2019, ( accessed [access date]). 

Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Weathervane Wednesday ~ At the Animal Kingdom in DisneyWorld

It's been nearly two months since I've posted a weathervane!  During that time we went on vacation to everyone's favorite theme park - Disney World in Florida.  Here are a few weathervanes we spotted at the Animal Kingdom:

This complicated weathervane was seen atop the Island Mercantile gift shop on Discovery Island.  It features six birds and a fish pointer!  There were no cardinal points on this weathervane. 

This weathervane had two insects, but I don't know which insects they represent, and an interesting vane shaped like a leafy branch.  It was located above the Flame Tree Barbecue Restaurant, right near the gift shop seen above. 


Heather Wilkinson Rojo, "Weathervane Wednesday ~ At the Animal Kingdom in DisneyWorld", Nutfield Genealogy, posted March 20, 2019,( accessed [access date]). 

Thursday, March 14, 2019

Throwback Thursday ~ 1981 and 1982 Plymouth, Massachusetts

This was a real find!  Two visits to Plymouth, Massachusetts during our college years.

In the first trip, one spring weekend during college six friends piled into one car and drove from Cambridge, Massachusetts to Plymouth, Massachusetts.  I was the only native New Englander in the bunch, so I had fun touring them around to see the sights.  This was a long time before I knew I had any Mayflower ancestors.

These are more of the deteriorating, old photo slides that we used to take in college because it was less expensive than prints back then in 1981.  These slides were on Kodak film, which seems to have retained the color and sharpness better than the previous "Throwback Thursday" photo slide blog posts, which were taken with Seattle Filmworks film and processing.

The Forefathers Monument in Plymouth, MA

Vincent's old Pinto station wagon, which held six of us!

The Mayflower II

Plymouth Rock, hasn't changed much since 1981!

This marble pavilion houses Plymouth Rock at Plymouth harbor.
This view hasn't changed in almost 40 years. 

The fort at Plimoth Plantation

The view from the top of the fort down Leyden Street at
Plimoth Plantation, a living history museum

A timeless scene, the native Wampanoag home site at Plimoth Plantation

Yours Truly and Vincent at the Mayflower II.
Many years before I knew I was a
descendant of a Mayflower passenger!

At one of the beaches at Plymouth, Massachusetts

Dodging the waves at the beach

Walking along the beach in Plymouth

Yes, the three guys in our group went swimming in their jeans.
It was a wet ride all the way back to Cambridge.

Swimming in jeans.  Fun at the moment, but wet jeans aren't very comfortable later!

In 1982 Vincent's Mom came from Spain to visit Massachusetts. We took her to visit Plymouth and Plimoth Plantation.

The view from on top of the Fort/Meetinghouse at Plimoth Planation.
 You can no longer go to the roof of this building,
but today you can lookout of gunports on the second floor. 

There no longer are stocks at Plimoth Plantation.
Vincent took a moment for a photo opportunity here!

Another timeless photo!  Me and my future mother-in-law
in front of the Mayflower II on the Plymouth waterfront.


Heather Wilkinson Rojo, "Throwback Thursday ~ 1981 and 1982 Plymouth, Massachusetts", Nutfield Genealogy, posted March 14, 2019, ( accessed [access date]).

Wednesday, March 13, 2019

How to use the Nutfield Genealogy Blog to research your ancestors

The Morrison House Museum, Londonderry Historical Society
Londonderry, New Hampshire

Many readers are not sure how to use my blog to help with researching their Nutfield (Londonderry, Derry, Derryfield (Manchester) or Windham), New Hampshire ancestors.  Here are a few pointers for searching and using the nearly ten years worth of blog posts (that is nearly 3,000 blog posts!).

First, look up at the top of the blog page (not on a mobile device) and see the search bar in the top left corner?  You can enter any surname, topic, geographic area (town, state, etc), and the results will be any blog post that mentions that word or phrase.  If you are searching for a particular Scots Irish early settler, or any other New England family, try that name and see what pops up.

Next, (also, not on a mobile device) look under the image at the top of the page and you will find clickable tabs that will take you to permanent pages. Here are explanations:

      1.       There is a link to the website for the Nutfield 300th anniversary  

       2.       A list of all the surnames in my family tree for nine generations (do we have a cousin connection?).

      3.       A chart of all the known descendants of Thomas Wilkinson (about 1690 – about 1739) my 6th great grandfather from Portsmouth, New Hampshire.

     4.       Chart of all the known descendants of Samuel Wilkinson (about 1722 – 1795) a possible son or cousin of Thomas Wilkinson. Samuel lived in Deerfield or Epping, New Hampshire and had three children named in a will.

     5.       Nutfield “Frequently Asked Questions”.  These are questions and answers for Nutfield genealogy research. This page is very useful for genealogy research on Londonderry settlers.  I tell most people to start on this page when researching their family tree!

      6.       A new page on the first sixteen families to settle in Londonderry in 1719 with Rev. James MacGregor.  There are links to sixteen blog posts with detailed genealogy sketches and sources for each family.

On the webpage, in the right hand column near the top is contact information.  My email address is   Please check the tab “Nutfield FAQ’s” before emailing me.  Your answer just might be right there in the FAQ's. 

Next on the right hand column is a blog archive where you can see all the blog posts for the month, and also click on past months and years to look up past articles.  

Also in the right hand column is a list of “labels” or keywords for blog posts. For every blog post I label all the surnames, geographic locations, themes, and topics (such as Quakers, poetry, census, DNA, etc).  If you peruse this list and click on a keyword, it will sort out all the blog posts labeled with that word.  This is not as complete as using the search bar mentioned above, but it can be useful for “picking your brain” as you browse the list of surnames and towns and topics in the list.

If you scroll way down to the bottom of the right hand column (way, way, way down!) there is a handy list of Nutfield links to other websites about Nutfield, and the towns that broke off from Nutfield.  Some are websites for newspapers, others are blogs, museums, and other handy websites for researchers.

All of my suggestions above are also applicable to most other blogs by other bloggers. Try out these suggestions at other genealogy blogs to maximize your research time.

NOTE:  If you are using a mobile device such as a phone or tablet, you may not be able to see the right hand column I described above.  You also may not be able to see the search bar.  On my iPhone the list of pages (the clickable links under the home page image described in the third paragraph) is presented as a gray bar under the image with a down arrow.  If you click the down arrow, there is a pop up window with the links available to scroll through.  This gets you access to the six permanent pages of information. 

Good luck, and let me know if you still have questions by leaving a comment or sending me an email!


Heather Wilkinson Rojo, "How to use the Nutfield Genealogy Blog to research your ancestors", Nutfield Genealogy, posted March 13, 2019, ( accessed [access date]). 

Saturday, March 9, 2019

STUART – Descendants of Nutfield Grantee John Stuart

Mary Stuard and her father John Stuart
photo by Dorothy Goldman for Find A Grave


“Charter John” Stuart was born in Scotland about 1682, and died on 6 April 1741 in Londonderry, New Hampshire.  According to the History of Windham, by Leonard Allison Morrison, page 15, his father was Robert Stuart of Scotland, a veteran of the Battle at Bothwell Bridge, between the Covenanters and the royal forces under the Duke of Monmouth.  The Covenanters fled to Northern Ireland.  Many of these families, when they came to Nutfield, eventually settled in what is now the town of Windham, New Hampshire.

Also, according to the Stewart compiled genealogy (see below) on pages 2 – 3, Robert Stuart was the son of Walter Stewart.  He married Janet Forsythe.  Robert Stuart fled to Londonderry, Northern Ireland where he was joined by his family.  Also, this book states that Charter John was born in Edinburgh in 1682. 

John Stuart is listed as one of the 16 men who settled the Nutfield (later known as Londonderry, New Hampshire) with Rev. James MacGregor in April of 1719.  He married first to Elizabeth Clark about 1704,  and he married a second woman named Elizabeth (maiden name unknown).  “Charter John” was a carpenter.  He is buried at the Forest Hill Cemetery in what is now East Derry, New Hampshire.   His wife Elizabeth died in Colrain, Massachusetts. 

John was given land along with the other early settlers in Londonderry, and his farm was known as the Precept Farm. He grew dissatisfied with his grant and in 1728 he petitioned the General Assembly for a change.  He was given an additional 34 acres of land in what is now the town of Windham, New Hampshire. This land is located between Cobbet’s Pond and Canobie Lake.   John Stuart’s petition can be found in The History of Windham. His new grant is in Willey’s Book of Nutfield, and both documents can be seen in the book (see below) by Severance, pages 8 and 9.  His son, John, Jr., inherited this land and passed it to the grandson, John Stewart, who lived here until he removed to Shelburne, Massachusetts in 1773.

John Stuart’s epitaph at Forest Hill Cemetery in East Derry, New Hampshire:

Memento Mori
Num sito labitur hora

Here lyes the intered body of
Mary Stuard, the daughter of
John Stuard and Eliz his wife,
Who departed this life November
The 7, 1738, and in the 22
Year of her age.
Here lyeth also the body
Of John Stuart father of the
Aforesaid Mary who departed this
Mortal life about the 60 year of
His age and on the 6 day of
April Anno Domini 1741

John Stuart’s will was transcribed in the compiled Stuart genealogy, pages 13 -14:

“In the Name of God, Amen I John Stuart of Londonderry in the Province of New Hampshire Yeoman Being very Sick and weak of Body But of a perfect mind and memory thanks be Given to God therefore Calling to mind the Mortality of my Body and Knowing it is appointed for all Men once to Dye do Make and Ordain this to be my last Will and Testament Principally and first I give and Recommend my Soul into the hands of God who gave it me and as for my Body I Recommend to the Dust to be Buried in a Christian Manner at the discretion of my Executors Doubting nothing But at the Resurrection I shall Receive the Same by the Almighty power of God and as for what it hath pleased God to Bless me with in this world I Give and Bequeath unto my well Beloved wife Elizabeth Stuart one hundred and fifty pounds Bills of Credits to be paid out of my Personal Estate Besides the one third of my house and Dwelling Lands and Improvement During her natural Life.

Impr. I Give and Bequeath unto my well Beloved Son Charles Stuart ten Pounds to be paid to him out of my Estate.
Impr. I give and Bequath unto my Grand Daughter Mary Stuart ten Pounds to be paid out of my Estate.
Impr. I give and Bequeath unto my Son Robert Stuart ten Pounds to be paid out of my Estate.
Impr. I give and Bequeath unto my well Beloved Son James Stuart the sum of ten Pounds to be paid out of my Estate.
Impr. I give and Bequeath unto my well Beloved son John Stuart ten Pounds to be paid out of my Estate.
Impr. I give and Bequeath unto my well Beloved son Samuel Stuart the one half of all the Remaining part of my Estate excepting what is Before Bequeathed.
Impr. I give and Bequeath unto my well Beloved Son Joseph Stuart and Margaret Stuart my well Beloved Daughter the other half of my Remaining Estate equally to be Divided Between them; and I appoint my Son Charles Stuart aforesaid and Samuel Stuart of Andover to be my Executors of this my Will and Testament Rattifying and Confirming this and no other to be my Last Will and Testament Revoling all others Whatsoever.
Dated at Londonderry this third day of April in the Year of our Lord God one thousand seven hundred and forty one.
Signed Sealed Published
Pronounced and Declared
To be my Last Will Testa-  John Stuart [Seal]
Ment in Presents of
John Wiear  Johnathan Morison
Samuel Alison Junr.”


     1.       Charles, born in Ireland about 1705 married first to Mary, married second to Martha Ayers 15 November 1727 in Londonderry, and married third to Jenett Lindsay 24 April 1759 in Pelham, Massachusetts. He died 6 May 1777 in Colrain, Massachusetts. Children: Elizabeth b. 11 January 1729 married John Clark of Colrain;  Mary, born 5 May 1730 married Abraham Peck of Colrain; Margaret, born 4 October 1731 married John Kately of Colrain; William born 12 February 1733 and married Elizabeth Clark; John, born about 1735 and married Ann McClellan and removed to Truxton, New York where he died 28 August 1818 ; Janet, who married Joseph Bell of Halifax, Vermont.

      2.       Robert, married Lydia Blair in Andover, New Hampshire in 1735.  He was a soldier in the French and Indian War,  at Fort No. 4 in 1747, and served under Colonel John Goffe in 1760.

       3.       James, married Margaret, lived in Pennsylvania.

      4.       John, was born in Ireland in 1711, and married Rebecca Costa, widow of Robert Patten who died on the way to America and was buried at sea. He lived on his father’s farm in Windham.  He was also a soldier of the French and Indian War at Fort No. 4, and also served under Colonel John Goffe in the invasion of Canada to Crown Point.  He died during the expedition on 29 March 1761. His widow remarried a third time to David Hopkins and removed to Shelburne, Massachusetts where she died 6 February 1802 at age 90. Children: John born 22 September 1743; Robert born 15 September 1748; Rebecca born 20 December 1750 and died 26 Feb 1757; Mary born 2 May 1753 and died 8 March 1757; Hannah born November 1755 and died 15 March 1757 (these last three daughters all died within two weeks of each other); and Adam, born 1758 and died 24 April 1777.

      5.       Mary died age 22 on 7 November 1738 in Londonderry, New Hampshire (shares a tombstone with her father at Forest Hill Cemetery in what is now East Derry, New Hampshire). 

      6.       Samuel Stuart, married Alice Atchinson, lived in Colrain, Massachusetts.  He might have died near Salem, New York where Alice was living with a daughter.  Children:  John born in Londonderry, New Hampshire on 12 September 1745; William born before 1746 and married Mary Harris, served in the Revolutionary War (he is believed to have explored Kentucky with Daniel Boon on 1 May 1769, and was killed at the Battle of Blue Licks, 19 August 1782); Isabel, married a Moore and lived in Pennsylvania; Samuel, born in Londonderry, New Hampshire on 23 February 1749; Mary, (twin) born in Colrain on 18 May 1753 and married Robert Archibald and removed to Salem, New York; Alice (twin) born in Colrain on 18 May 1753 married William Smith and removed to Putnam, New York; Rebecca, born at Colrain on 26 July 1756 and married a Merriman, removed to Salem, New York in 1800 and then removed again to Ohio; James, born at Colrain on 5 January 1759, was a Minute Man who answered the Lexington alarm in 1775, and at Bennington in August 1777 (he was in Kentucky around 1784 and was killed at Harmers defeat by the Indians near Fort Wayne, Indiana in 1791, probably unmarried); and Sarah who married Robert Gillis of Salem, New York as his second wife.

      7.       Joseph, born 17 January 1721, married first to Margaret Thompson 1 June 1747 in Londonderry.  Married second to Hannah Hescock.  Died 22 February 1821 in White Creek, Washington County, New York.  He removed to Colrain and had lot No. 43. He sold his homestead on 15 March 1770 and later appeared in Halifax and Bennington, Vermont.  In 1800 he was in Washington County, New York.  Children:  Susan, Mary born 13 July 1750, died on the 28th of July 1750; Joseph, born at Colrain on 6 April 1752; John born 14 February 1755; Alexander born 10 April 1757; Mary born 27 June 1759; Ann born 24 September 1761; Jonathan (twin) born 3 May 1765; and Solomon (twin) born 3 May 1765.

      8.       Margaret, married an Aiken.

For more information:

Genealogy and Biography of the Descendants of Walter Stewart of Scotland and John Stewart who came to America and Settled in 1718 in Londonderry, NH, by B. Frank Severance, 1905. 

History of Windham in New Hampshire, by Leonard Alison Morrison, 1883.

Willey’s Book of Nutfield, by George Franklyn Willey, 1895.

Clan Stewart Society in America: 

Note:  There was another John Stewart who lived in Londonderry early.  He might even have been a kinsman (nephew? Cousin?) to the Charter John Stuart above.  He was brought over by Rev. MacGregor as a young servant.  He is called “Weaver John” Stewart in some records to distinguish himself from “Charter John” Stuart.  He married Jean Barr and is buried at Forest Hill Cemetery in East Derry (formerly the town of Londonderry).  I have a blog post with a brief genealogy and a photo of his tombstone:

Heather Wilkinson Rojo, “STUART – Descendants of Nutfield Grantee John Stuart”, Nutfield Genealogy, posted March 9, 2019, ( accessed [access date]). 

Friday, March 8, 2019

STERRETT – Descendants of Nutfield Settler James Sterrett


[NOTE:  I have been publishing a series of genealogical sketches of the first sixteen families to settle in Nutfield (Londonderry, New Hampshire in advance of the 300th anniversary for Founders Day, April 12 – 14, 2019 in Derry, New Hampshire.  If you have additional notes on the first few generations of the STERRETT or STARRETT family, please comment below or send me an email at and I will edit this sketch. These sketches will be used and distributed to the public and to the descendants at the Founders Day activities]

Very little is known about James Sterrett.  He was one of the sixteen settlers who followed Rev. James MacGregor to Nutfield, New Hampshire in 1719.  He was granted an additional 80 acres next to his original home lot in 1729. Most of his children all removed to Maine.  His wife was “Catherine” and he had four children:

      1.       James Starratt, died 1729 when his ship was lost at sea near Ipswich, Massachusetts. He married first to Lois Curtis, and second to a Woodside. He lived in York, Maine

      2.       Mary, married James McCartney in November 1723 in Kittery, Maine.

      3.       John Starratt, married Martha and lived in Chester, New Hampshire

      4.       Peter Starrat, was married first in Ireland, and married second to Eleanor Armstrong in 1742 in Falmouth, Maine. Children:  Joseph b. 1743 married Mary and removed to Granville Township, Nova Scotia;  John, born 11 February 1745/6 at Falmouth, Maine and died 4 October 1829 in Paradise, Nova Scotia, married Hannah Bancroft; George, born 1747 in Falmouth, Maine and died 20 April 1820 in Paradise, Nova Scotia, married Sarah Balcom; William, born 1749 in Granville, Nova Scotia, died 23 April 1777 in Boston, Massachusetts; Mary, born 1751, died in Bridgetown, Nova Scotia, married first to Thomas Spencer Brown on 1 June 1767, married second to Daniel Wade on 24 December 1776 in Granville, Nova Scotia; Anna Starratt, born 1753, married Zaccheus Phinney; Eleanor Starratt, born 1757 married John McGregor 1773 in Granville, Nova Scotia.

One of the four speakers at the Founders Weekend (April 12 – 14) in Derry, New Hampshire will be Robert Starratt, a history instructor for the city of Edinburgh, United Kingdom, and a well- known Ulster-Scots migration researcher.  His talk will be “From Londonderry to Londonderry… the Sterret(t) Saga”.  

There is another Scots Irish STERRETT family in Maryland and Virginia.  You can read about them in the book The Stewart Sterrett Family Tree, 1740 – 1979, by E. S. Shearer, 1979.

See all sixteen genealogical sketches of the first settlers to Nutfield at this link: 


Heather Wilkinson Rojo, "STERRETT – Descendants of Nutfield Settler James Sterrett", Nutfield Genealogy, posted March 8, 2019, ( accessed [access date]).

Thursday, March 7, 2019

Throwback Thursday ~ 1981 Bike Race from MIT to Wellesley College

More college days photo slides (even though the color is deteriorating)!  It's a good thing Vincent is digitizing these old pictures.  This group of photos features a bike race from MIT to Wellesley College (from Cambridge to Wellesley, Massachusetts.  The men in these photos are all from Vincent's house at MIT (New House III), and the women are mostly my friends and I.  I love the short shorts on the men in these photos - very vintage now!

For some reason we are all up in the Green Building on the MIT campus,
peering out the window... nice view of Boston and the Charles River!

On the Wellesley College campus, waiting for the bikers to arrive

The green T-shirts were the house shirts for MIT's New House III,
although they read "NTS" for "New Three Stooges"

The end of the bike race

Time for a picnic after the race

Relaxing before returning to MIT. 


Heather Wilkinson Rojo, "Throwback Thursday ~ 1981 Bike Race from MIT to Wellesley College", Nutfield Genealogy, posted March 7, 2019, ( accessed [access date]).

Wednesday, March 6, 2019

Registration Now Open for Founders Weekend, April 12 - 14, Derry, New Hampshire

First Parish Meetinghouse, East Derry, New Hampshire 1895

Commemorating the arrival of the first Scots Irish Settlers on 12 April 1719, this is the 300th anniversary of the founding of Nutfield, New Hampshire.  There will be on going events all this year in the towns of Derry, Londonderry, Derryfield (Manchester), and Windham.

On Founders Weekend in East Derry, on April 12th to the 14th there will be a three day celebration with two tracks. The public Heritage Weekend will be based at the First Parish Meetinghouse (founded as the Presbyterian Church by Rev. James MacGregor in 1719).  There will be lots of free activities open to the general public.  The second track will be the Nutfield Families Reunion and Conference at the historic Upper Village Hall across the street from the Meetinghouse.  For a conference fee there will be opportunities for participants to share family history, research methods, and reunite with family members, and even make cousin connections with relatives they may never have known before.

The conference program includes four hour-long Keynote talks, a special welcome dinner, a gift bag of literature and souvenir items, beverages and snacks, lunch on Saturday and Sunday, priority discounts to the welcome dinner and Saturday night Gala, and a place to meet and share information.  Please go to this webpage to learn more and register for the Nutfield Families Reunion and Conference 

This event kicks off the Nutfield 300th celebrations!

Upper Village Hall, East Derry, New Hampshire

Founders Weekend:



Heather Wilkinson Rojo, "Registration Now Open for Founders Weekend, April 12 - 14, Derry, New Hampshire", Nutfield Genealogy, posted March 6, 2019, ( accessed [access date]).