Saturday, September 28, 2013

Surname Saturday ~ DRAPER of Roxbury, Massachusetts

1832 map of Roxbury, Massachusetts
from the Jamaica Plain Hstorical Society 

It is not known when the James Draper first arrived in Massachusetts. In the history books he is nicknamed James “The Puritan” Draper, or sometimes James “The First” or “The Emigrant” Draper.  His oldest daughter, Miriam, was born in Heptonstall, Yorkshire, England on 7 February 1647.   His next daughter, Susanna,  was recorded in Roxbury in 1650.  James Draper and Marie Stansfield were married on 21 April 1646 in Heptonstall, Yorkshire, England.  He had several children born in Dedham between 1663 and 1668, and the last two children were born again in Roxbury.  James died in Roxbury on 13 July 1697.

At some point in 1654 James was named as a proprietor for the new town of Lancaster, Massachusetts but he remained in Roxbury and never lived there.  He owned several looms, and was a clothier in both England and Massachusetts.   James Draper was a large landowner in Roxbury, which was a separate town, but now is a neighborhood of Boston.  There are quite a few records of the Draper family in the Roxbury town records.

Marrian or Marie Draper’s gravestone is one of the oldest in the Westerly Burying Gound in Roxbury.  The epitaph reads “Here lyes ye body of Mrs. Marrian Draper, wife of Mr. James Draper, aged about 77 years.   Jan 1697”.   Click HERE to see a photo of this stone at  She came to America with her younger sister, Abigail, who married Samuel May of Boston on 7 May 1654.

Some DRAPER resources:

The Drapers in America, by Thomas Waln-Morgan Draper, New York: Polhemus Printing Company, 1892 (available to read or download online at

“The English Genealogy of James Draper”, The American Genealogist, Volume XV, pages 237 to 242.
There is no mention of James Draper in The Great Migration series, nor in the book New Englanders in the 1600s by Martin Hollick.

The Town Records of Roxbury, Massachusetts, 1647 – 1730: Being Volume One of the Original, by Robert J. Dunkle, edited by Ann S. Lainhart, Boston: New England Historic Genealogical Society, 1997.

My Draper Genealogy:

Generation 1: James Draper, son of William Draper and Grace Mitchell, born 28 July 1622 in Heptonstall, Halifax, Yorkshire, England, died 13 July 1687 in Roxbury, Massachusetts; married on 21 April 1646 in Heptonstall to Marie Stansfield, daughter of Gideon Stansfield and Grace Eastwood.  She was born on 27 November 1625 in Heptonstall, and died between 1700 and 1701 in Roxbury.  Nine children.

Generation 2: Moses Draper,  born 15 September 1663 in Dedham, Massachusetts, died 14 August 1693 in Boston, Massachusetts; married on 7 July 1685 in Roxbury to Hannah Chandler, daughter of John Chandler and Elizabeth Douglas.  She was born 18 September 1669 in Roxbury, and died 9 June 1692 in Roxbury.  Two children.  Moses married second to Mary Thacher.

Generation 3: Hannah Draper, born 8 April 1686 in Roxbury, died 11 July 1741 in Norwich, Connecticut; married before 1704 to Samuel Gore, son of Samuel Gore and Elizabeth Weld.  He was born 20 October 1681 in Roxbury, and died 27 May 1756 in Norwich, Connecticut.  Nine children.

Generation 4:  Moses Gore m. Desire Burris
Generation 5:  Desire Gore m. Thomas Ratchford
Generation 6:  Elizabeth Ratchford m. David Lyons
Generation 7:  Thomas Ratchford Lyons m. Ann Skinner
Generation 8:  Isabella Lyons m. Rev. Ingraham Ebenezer Bill
Generation 9: Caleb Rand Bill m. Ann Margaret Bollman
Generation 10: Isabella Lyons Bill m. Albert Munroe Wilkinson
Generation 11:  Donald Munroe Wilkinson m. Bertha Louise Roberts (my grandparents)


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Copyright (c) 2013, Heather Wilkinson Rojo


  1. We have many Gore, Draper, Chandler, Weld, et al Ancestors in common on my maternal line. Do you have DNA tests on 23andMe, FTDNA, or I have tested with all three so we should show as distant cousins. Thanks!

    1. Yes, I have tested with Ancestry. All the names you mentioned are very far back in my family tree, so I don't know if we would still match. I have contacted most, but not all of my matches.

  2. Yes, mine also; we are probably back at least 5 generations. My ancestry test should be under: richway12