Saturday, January 12, 2013

Surname Saturday ~ Tufts of Charlestown and Malden, Massachusetts


My first and only Tufts ancestor is Mary Tufts, the daughter of Peter and Frances Tufts, born in England about 1613.  She married George Fowle in England, about 1634, had one son, and then came to America.  She lived first in Concord, Massachusetts (where she had five children), and then in Charlestown (where she had five more children!).

It is interesting that Mary’s sister, Elizabeth, and brother, Peter Tufts, all came to America, too, and lived in Malden, Massachusetts next door to Charlestown.   Peter Tufts  (1616 – 1700) married Mary Pierce in 1647 in Charlestown, and had five children.  Sister Elizabeth Tufts (about 1619 – 1693) married Thomas Lynde in Charlestown in 1646. 

Tufts University is located in both Medford and Somerville, Massachusetts, across the Mystic River from Charlestown and Malden.   The founders were Universalists, and 20 acres of land were donated by Charles Tufts in 1852 on top of Walnut Hill, the highest point in Medford.  He also made a second  donation of another 80 acres later in his life.  In 1892 the trustees voted to admit both men and women.  P. T. Barnum was an early benefactor, and he started a Natural History Museum on campus with his animal specimens, including Jumbo the elephant, who is the college mascot.

Charles Tufts (1781 – 1876), the college benefactor, is the 3x great grandson of Peter Tufts and Mary Pierce of Malden, Massachusetts.   He would be my fourth cousin, five generations removed.  He made his fortune in brickmaking, and inherited most of his land.   He is buried at Mount Auburn Cemetery.    

You can read about the Tufts family at Thomas W. Tuft’s blog “Tufts Family Genealogy” at the link   There is a book called Tufts Kinsmen: A Recapitulation of the Geonealogy of All Known Persons of the Tufts Surname, by Herbert Freeman Adams, 1992, as well as many papers published by the Tufts Kinsman Association at the NEHGS library.  You can also read a story of the family at the book Sex in Middlesex, by Roger Thompson, University of Massachusetts Press, 1986, pages 45 – 53. 


Generation 1: Mary Tufts, daughter of Peter Tufts and Frances Unknown, born about 1613 probably in Wilby, Norfolk, England, died 15 February 1676 in Charlestown, Massachusetts; married about 1634 in England to George Fowle, son of George Fowle and Ann Draper.  He was born on 27 January 1610 in Sandhurst, Kent, England, and died on 19 September 1682 in Charlestown, Massachusetts. Eleven children.

Generation 2:  Lt. James Fowle m. Abigail Carter
Generation 3:  Capt. James Fowle m. Mary Richardson
Generation 4: Mary Fowle m. James Simonds
Generation 5: Caleb Simonds m. Susanna Converse
Generation 6:  Ruth Simonds m. Andrew Munroe
Generation 7:  Luther Simonds Munroe m. Olive Flint
Generation 8: Phebe Cross Munroe m. Robert Wilson Wilkinson
Generation 9: Albert Munroe Wilkinson m. Isabella Lyons Bill
Generation 10: Donald Munroe Wilkinson m. Bertha Louise Roberts (my grandparents)

Copyright 2013, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

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