Friday, October 31, 2014

Halloween ~ A visit to "Blood Cemetery"

Pine Hill Cemetery in Hollis, New Hampshire is also known as “Blood Cemetery” not because of anything violent that happened here, but because of the Blood family.  This cemetery unfortunately has become quite famous online as the site of paranormal activity.  Because of this “fame” there has been vandalism and loitering in this remote cemetery.  The town has erected surveillance cameras and the place is off limits between dusk and dawn.  The Hollis town police patrol this area especially near Halloween to keep out the vandals and thrill seekers.

Abel Blood’s tombstone has attracted many teenagers over the years due to myth and rumor.  The local historians haven’t found any connection between poor Abel Blood and any violent act or the occult, but nonetheless over the years many believe he haunts this cemetery.  The town had to remove Abel's tombstone because of all the damage and vandalism.   Local teens leave coins on the graves of the other Blood family members, perhaps as a bribe or offering to free them from his haunts?

During my visit there were coins on these two gravestones, and on several others. 

What is funny is that very near there is a real Blood Cemetery in Dunstable, Massachusetts- just over the border and a ten minute drive from Pine Hill Cemetery in Hollis, New Hampshire.  This smaller cemetery is labeled Blood Cemetery, has a sign, has some Blood family gravestones, and yet the local believers in spooky things seem to leave it alone.

Go figure!

The real "Blood Cemetery" located in Dunstable, Massachusetts
ten minutes from Pine Hill Cemetery

 “Blood Cemetery” , a webpage by the International Organization for Paranormal Activity all about Pine Hill Cemetery in Hollis, New Hampshire “is believed to be the most haunted and active cemeteries in the region” 

On YouTube  “Creepy Places of New England: Blood Cemetery”

Blood Cemetery (actually the Pine Hill Cemetery) is on this list of the spookiest places in the state of New Hampshire by Yankee Magazine: 

New Hampshire Magazine, October 2012 “Spooky Stuff: Blood Cemetery” by Barbara Coles   

To cite/link to this blog post: Heather Wilkinson Rojo, "Halloween ~ A visit to "Blood Cemetery", Nutfield Genealogy, posted October 31, 2020, ( accessed [access date]). 

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Haunted Hannah Jack’s Tavern

The Common Man Restaturant, formerly the Hannah Jack Tavern, in Merrimack, New Hampshire

This building was constructed by Edward Goldstone Lutwyche, a Tory whose property was seized during the American Revolution.  Dr. Matthew Thornton, signer of the Declaration of Independence, bought the property at auction and it was inherited by son James.  He named it Hannah Jack’s Tavern, after his mother.  She was born in Chester, New Hampshire in 1742.  Today this restaurant is known as The Common Man Restaurant on the Daniel Webster Highway in Merrimack, New Hampshire, but until 2004 it was known as Hannah Jack’s Tavern. 

Hannah and Dr. Thornton are buried across the street at the Matthew Thornton cemetery.  You can read all about their gravesite HERE at this blog post.

Hannah Jack Thornton's gravestone in Merrimack, New Hampshire

Over the years many restaurant workers have claimed to see ghosts in the building.  Some have reported seeing an Indian; some see servants in colonial clothing.  A few of the sightings have been in the basement, and some on the stairs.  I’ve been to this restaurant many times, and it seems bright and sunny, not at all dark and creepy, but I admit that I’ve never been down in the basement.   In October 2008 the Nocturnal Society of Paranormal research and Investigations surveyed the restaurant for "ghostly activity".  People believe that James Thornton hung himself off a rafter in the dining room, but I hadn’t seen proof of a suicide in any historical record.  Then reader and fellow genealogy blogger Janice Webster Brown sent me this item from the 5 July 1817 Farmer's Cabinet newspaper!

"DIED- .... - In Merrimack, 3d inst. Capt. James Thornton, aet. 53 - (suicide
from derangement.)"

Thanks, Janice!

For more information:

Ghosts and Legends of the Merrimack Valley, by C. C. Carole, published by Haunted America, A Division of The History Press, Charleston, SC, 2009, pages 66 -69.

Haunted Pubs of New England: Raising Spirits of the Past by Roxie J. Zwicker, published by Haunted America, A Division of the History Press, Charleston, SC, 2007, pages 73 – 77, and it is also readable online at Google Books.

“Ghost hunters look for proof Merrimack eatery is haunted”, on the website of the New Hampshire Business Review, published 10 October 2008, accessed 21 October 2014

Nutfield Note:

It is interesting to note that Edward Goldstone Lutwyche’s unusual surname was the middle name of Reverend Edward Lutwyche Parker, the Nutfield, New Hampshire historian and the author of The History of Londonderry in 1851.  Rev. Parker was a graduate of Dartmouth College and ordained in 1810.  He served as pastor at the First Church in Derry until his death in 1850, and his son published his history posthumously.  Rev. Parker's father was a great friend of Edward Goldstone Lutwyche, and named his son after him.  

Edward Goldstone Lutwyche was also one of the Loyalist men who assembled a posse to arrest the protesters at the “Pine Tree Riot” in Weare, New Hampshire.  This was one of the first acts of resistance to British authority in the American Colonies, taking place on 13 April 1772.  His loyalty to the crown must have made Lutwyche very unpopular with his neighbors.  Thornton and Lutwyche also had a long standing feud over the rights to a ferry across the Merrimack River to Litchfield.  This area was known as Lutwyche’s Ferry, but is now known as Thornton’s Ferry in Merrimack, New Hampshire.

Other ghostly haunted locations posted at this blog:

The Coach Stop Restaurant in Londonderry:

Pinkerton Tavern in Derry (no longer standing):

The Towne Burial Ground in Londonderry:

Fort Warren in Boston Harbor:

The URL for this post is
Copyright © 2014, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Weathervane Wednesday ~ from a New Hampshire Winery

Weathervane Wednesday is an on-going series of photographs I post weekly.  I started by publishing weather vanes from the Londonderry, New Hampshire area, but now I've been finding interesting weather vanes all across New England.  Sometimes my weather vanes are whimsical, or historical, but all are interesting. Often, my readers tip me off to some very unique and unusual weather vanes, too! If you know an interesting or historical weathervane, please let me know.  Today's weather vane is from New Hampshire.

Do you know the location of weather vane #180? Scroll down to the bottom to see the answer!

Today's weather vane was spotted on top of the beautiful LaBelle Winery in Amherst, New Hampshire. This custom weather vane is a replica of the figure on wine label produced here at 345 Route 101.  This facility has the wine production, a shop and a restaurant, as well as beautiful rolling countryside planted with neat rows of grapevines.

This winery was founded by Amy LaBelle, who experimented with making wine for many years in her kitchen, and at an orchard in Walpole, New Hampshire.  She broke ground for this facility in 2012, and it has become a popular destination for fine dining, wine tasting and elegant functions. The wines here are made from local fruit and grapes from the Finger Lakes region of New York state.  The grape vines planted in Amherst have been growing and maturing, and finally this fall will be made into their first batches of local New Hampshire grape wine.

LaBelle Winery website

Click here to see the entire series of Weathervane Wednesday posts!  

The URL for this post is

Copyright (c) 2014, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Tombstone Tuesday ~ Hoogerzeil and Sorenson

This cemetery plot was photographed at the Central Cemetery in Beverly, Massachusetts.  Peter Hoogerzeil, son of Peter Hoogerzeil of the Netherlands and Eunice Stone of Beverly, was born on 24 June 1841 in Beverly and died 10 May 1908 in Beverly.  On 14 March 1870 in Beverly he married Mary Etta Healey, daughter of Joseph Edwin Healey and Matilda Weston.  They were my 2nd great grandparents and they had six children:

1.  Florence Etta Hoogerzeil, my great grandmother.  She was born 20 August 1871 in Beverly, and she married Arthur Treadwell Hitchings.  She died on 10 February 1941 in Hamilton, Massachusetts.  She is not buried here.

2. Lillie May Hoogerzeil. She was born on 29 September 1872 in Beverly and died on 17 May 1874 in Beverly.  She is not buried in this plot.  Since she was less than 8 months old when she died perhaps she is buried in the infant section of this cemetery?

3.  Alonzo Hoogerzeil, born 29 May 1875 in Beverly and died 23 January 1946 in Beverly.  He was married to Mabel Thurston Cressey, who died in 1951 in Salem.  He is listed in the 1930 census as divorced.  He is buried here without his wife or children.

4.  Edward Peter Hoogerzeil, born 27 July 1877 in Beverly, and died 11 October 1907 in Beverly of "hemiplegia" (paralysis of half the body).  He was unmarried and is buried here.

5.  Lucy May Hoogerzeil, born 18 June 1882 in Beverly, died 3 September 1931 in Beverly.  She died unmarried and is buried here.

6.  Isabel Hoogerzeil, born 3 August 1888 in Beverly, and died 29 February 1960 in Beverly.  She was married to George Sorenson, a Norwegian immigrant, and they had no children.  They are both buried here.

PETER              MARY

GEORGE             ISABEL

From the side you can see that the smaller stones
in this family plot have sunk and are unreadable

The Hoogerzeil/Sorenson plot is #2 on this map, highlighted in pink

A detail of the map above.
The Hoogerzeil-Sorenson plot is outlined in pink

No. 261  Sub-Div No. 7  ---------- Avenue   Endowed
Name:  Peter Hogerzeil

Interments                                                           Removals
Month  Day  Year                 Name                     Age                             
                                                   Yrs. Months         
 -  11   1907  1.  Edward P. Hogerzeil         30  2                             
4  10  1909   2.   Peter Hoogerzeil               65  10                          
           September 5  1931   3. Lucy M. Hoogerzeil          49 2                                                     
July 25 1932   4. Marietta Hoogerzeil          80 2                                
January 25 1946   5.  Alonzo Hoogerzeil           71 7                                      
August 11 1949   6. George Sorenson               79 7                                     
Mar 2 1960  7. Isabelle H. Sorenson          71  6                             

The URL for this post is

Copyright (c) 2014, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

Monday, October 27, 2014

2014 Seven to Save

Last week the New Hampshire Preservation Alliance announced its “2014 Seven to Save” list of historical buildings or sites worth preserving.  For the past eight years this list has raised support and awareness for endangered historic places in New Hampshire.  In many cases, this list and the awareness of these places in the media has saved these buildings from loss, demolition or ill planned renovations.

Of the over 50 structures on this list, half were saved.  Many are local buildings in southern New Hampshire, such as the First Parish Church of Derry, which was on the 2009 list, or the Derry Upper Village Hall, which was on the very first list in 2006.  Both buildings still need expensive structural renovation and restoration.  The publicity this event raises every year helps in the necessary fund raising for buildings like these.

Major success stories include the Pandora Mill in Manchester, the restored Acworth Meeting House, and the Mill Pond Dam in Durham.  According to the New Hampshire Preservation Alliance “some past listees like the Balsams in Dixville Notch and the Gas Holder in Concord still have uncertain futures.”

The announcement was made on 22 October 2014:

1.  Brown Company House, Berlin
2.  Kimball Lake Cabins, Hopkinton
3.  Hill-Lasonde House, Manchester
4. Poor Family Farm, Stewartstown
5. Bradford Town Hall, Bradford
6.  Washington Meetinghouse/Town Hall, Washington
7. Watson Academy, Epping

*8. (A bonus for 2014)  Historic Family Farms and Agricultural Landscapes, statewide

For more information:

The New Hampshire Preservation Alliance: 

The 2014 Seven to Save Listees:  

The URL for this post is

Copyright © 2014, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Surname Saturday ~ WARNER of Ipswich, Massachusetts

The Great Migration Series


The English origins of William Warner were laid out in a book The History of Peter Parker and Sarah Ruggles of Roxbury, Mass., and Their Ancestors and Descendants, by John William Linzee (Boston, 1913) but disputed by Robert Charles Anderson in his book The Great Migration, Volume VII (T-Y), pages 243 -247.  He was born about 1587 and had two children baptized in Boxted, Essex, England.  His origins are unknown.

His wife is unknown, but the following excerpt from The Great Migration is interesting because both William Warner and Simons Stone are my 10th great grandfathers :

“Richard Lumkin and Sarah Baker were married at Boxted, Essex, on 20 October 1614.  After Lumkin's death, Sarah married SIMON STONE {1635, Watertown} [Great Migration 2:6:553-58].  In her will of 25 March 1663, "Sarah Stone wife of Simon Stone of Watertowne... and the relict of Richard Lumkin deceased sometime of Boxstead in the County of Essex,  in England and last of all Ipswich in New England" ordered that the residue of her estate "be equally divided between my kinsmen John Warner, Daniel Warner, and Thomas Wells" and made these three men her executors [Middlesex County Probate Records 2:128-30, Case #21723].  Given this close connection between Sarah (Baker) (Lumpkin) Stone and the children of William Warner, and the baptism of the tow children of William Warner at Boxted, most writers have proposed that William Warner married a sister of Sarah, but no further evidence has emerged which would confirm that this is the precise relationship between the two families.”

Besides these interesting controversies over William Warner’s origins and the possible identity of his wife, not much else is known about him.  He was made a freeman in Ipswich by 1638 and he received one of the original 1635 grants of land.  In 1637 he was granted a house lot and farm land.  He left no will, and no tombstone, nor a death record.

For more information on the WARNER family:

“Posterity of William Warner, one of the Early Settlers of Ipswich, Massachusetts”,  in the New England Historic Genealogical Society Register, Volume 20 (1866), pages 64 -66

The Great Migration, by Robert Charles Anderson, Volume VII T-Y, pages 243 – 247.

You may also want to consult with a manuscript “Research on William Warner” by Elizabeth L. Nichols, call number Mss C3457 in the R. Stanton Avery Special Collections at the New England Historic Genealogical Society in Boston. These are the typed research and charts on several men in New England all named William Warner.

My WARNER genealogy:

Generation 1: William Warner, baptized 10 March 1586 in Boxted, died before 1648 in Ipswich, Massachusetts; married about 1611 to Unknown – possible surname Baker.  Five children.
Generation 2: Abigail Warner, born 2 June 1614 in Boxted, died 22 July 1671 in Ipswich; married before 1636 to Thomas Wells.  He was born about 1605 in England and died 26 October 1666 in Ipswich.  Seven children.

Generation 3: Elizabeth Wells m. John Burnham ( I descend from three of their nine children)

Lineage A:

Generation 4:  John Burnham m. Sarah Choate
Generation 5: J ohn Burnham m. Rachel Smith
Generation 6:  Dorothy Burnham m. Abner Poland
Generation 7:  Abner Poland m. Sarah Burnham
Generation 8:  Sally Poland m. Henry Burnham
Generation 9: Sarah Ann Burnham m. Samuel Mears
Generation 10: Sarah Burnham Mears m. Joseph Gilman Allen
Generation 11: Joseph Elmer Allen m. Carrie Maude Batchelder
Generation 12: Stanley Elmer Allen m. Gertrude Matilda Hitchings (my grandmother)

Lineage B:

Generation 6:  Thomas Burnham m. Susannah Boardman
Generation 7: Stephen Burnham m. Mary Andrews
Generation 8: Joshua Burnham m. Jemima Wyman
Generation 9: Jemima Burnham m. Romanus Emerson
Generation 10: George Emerson m. Mary Esther Younger
Generation 11: Mary Katharine Emerson m.  George E. Batchelder
Generation 12: Carrie Maude Batchelder m. Joseph Elmer Allen (see above)

Lineage C:

Generation 4:   David Burnham m. Elizabeth Perkins

Lineage C1:
Generation 5:  David Burnham m. Elizabeth Marshall
Generation 6: Amos Burnham m. Sarah Giddings
Generation 7: Judith Burnham m. Joseph Allen (see above)

Lineage C2:
Generation 5:  Westley Burnham m. Deborah Story

Lineage C2a:
Generation 6: Westley Burnham m. Molly Woodbury
Generation 7: Henry Burnham m. Sally Poland (see above)

Lineage C2b:
Generation 6: Sarah Burnham m. Abner Poland
Generation 7: Sally Poland m. Henry Burnham (see above)

The URL for this post is

Copyright © 2014, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

Friday, October 24, 2014

Happy Birthday to me!

I won't say how old, or the year I was born...
but here is a cute photograph of a birthday long gone by.

I remember that my early birthdays always had a Halloween theme.  The birthday hat was decorated with pumpkins and black cats.  My sister was about ten months old. That old sofa was around for years and years, and it was covered with little scenes of colonial New England.  I can remember spending lots of time as a small child looking at all the houses, horses and trees all over the sofa.  We had it in the living room in our home in Beverly, Massachusetts, and in Holden, Massachusetts. By the time I was in high school it had been moved to the basement rec room.  The sofa was black and white, so no detail is missing in this old photo.

Isn't it funny the memories you find in old photographs?

The URL for this post is

Copyright (c) 2014, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Treasure Chest Thursday ~ Four Generations in one photograph

Thanksgiving 1987, Londonderry, New Hampshire 
4 generations of females
Yours Truly, my Mom, my daughter, my grandmother

Last week the New England Historic Genealogical Society's online "Weekly Genealogist" featured a survey asking the largest number of generations of your family were pictured in a single photograph.  The largest number of participants (59%) reported that four generations were pictured in a single photograph. I could only find four generations, not a single one with five generations, in my family photos, although I know some of my cousins have photos with five generations with grandmother.  However, I was able to find many examples of four generations of women featuring my grandmother, too.  Here are some of them. 

1990, Hamilton, Massachusetts
Yours Truly, my grandmother, my daughter, my sister and my Mom

1994, 4 generations again, in Hamilton, Massachusetts
My daughter, grandmother, Mom and Yours Truly

After this my grandmother went in to a nursing home and I don't remember taking anymore group photos like this.  She died in 2001 when she was over 96 years old. 

The URL for this post is

Copyright (c) 2014, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

STOLEN Dolphin Weathervane, $1,000 reward

The Chatham, Massachusetts police need the help of the public in locating a stolen dolphin weathervane.  It was stolen from a private home in Chatham this month.  The weathervane is a three dimensional copper dolphin plated in 24K gold, worth about $1000.  It is about 40 inches long.

Please contact the Chatham Police Department with any information at the following numbers:
508-945-1217 or leave an anonymous tip at 508-945-TTIP (8847)

You may also call the homeowner, Tamara Bazzle, at 404-231-5953 or email

This dolphin weathervane has been on the roof of this private home in Chatham for more than 50 years.  The homeowner contacted me directly because of the Weathervane Wednesday post of this very same weathervane here on December 4, 2013.  One of my readers from the Windham, New Hampshire Historical Society sent me the original photo you see above.  I was glad to post it on my blog, and I immediately replied to the email by the homeowner to spread the news of the theft. 

Please share this via social media.  I hope she can recover this very special weathervane.

According to the homeowner, their home was built in 1916 by Joseph Lincoln, the author of many novels, stories and poems set on Cape Cod.  The architect Howard Rich designed the weathervane for the house in 1969.  It was considered a local Chatham landmark.

Related stories on the stolen weathervane:

Cape Cod Online
Cape Cod Times 

The URL for this post is

Copyright © 2014, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

Weathervane Wednesday ~ Seen at a Highway Rest Area

Weathervane Wednesday is an on-going series of photographs I post weekly.  I started by publishing weather vanes from the Londonderry area, but now I've been finding interesting weather vanes all across New England.  Sometimes my weather vanes are whimsical, or historical, but all are interesting. Often, my readers tip me off to some very unique and unusual weather vanes, too!

Today's weather vane  is from New Hampshire.

Do you know the location of weather vane #179? Scroll down to see the answer!

This is a photograph of the Hooksett Rest area on the northbound side of Route 93.  It was photographed at the end of September when the new liquor store and the shop just opened.  The Common Man restaurant is scheduled to be open sometime soon.  The weather vane shaped like the state of New Hampshire over the state liquor store was made by the Common Man founder Alex Ray.

This new rest area will feature New Hampshire themed exhibits, New Hampshire made products, and expanded visitor services.  The project is running about eight weeks ahead of schedule.  The southbound side of the highway will have identical services and will be completed after the northbound side.

The rest area on the southbound side of Rt. 93 has a similar weathervane

Click here to see the entire series of Weathervane Wednesday posts!

The URL for this post is

Copyright (c) 2014, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Tombstone Tuesday ~ WYMAN in Hollis, New Hampshire

This tombstone was photographed at the Pine Hill Cemetery in Hollis, New Hampshire

In Memory                    In Memory
of Lieut.                     Mrs. Abigail
Jesse Wyman                       his wife      
who died                        who died
April 16, 1801            Oct. 29, 1808
AE. 64                           AE  62

What through our in bred sins require
Our flesh to see the dust
Yet as the Lord our Saviour rose
So all his followers must.

the inscription is still very legible on this slate stone

Jesse Wyman, son of Zebadiah Wyman and Abigail Pierce, was born on 18 March 1736/7 in Woburn, Massachusetts (in what is now the town of Billerica).  He married Abigail Johnson, daughter of Samuel Johnson and Priscilla Emery, on 18 September 1764 in Woburn, Massachusetts.  

Zebadiah Wyman was the son of Benjamin Wyman and Elizabeth Hancock.  Benjamin's brother Nathaniel (1665 - 1717) was my 8th great grandfather.  That makes Jesse Wyman my second cousin 9 generations removed.  

The URL for this post is

Copyright (c) 2014, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

Monday, October 20, 2014

An Autumn Visit to Dunbarton, New Hampshire

We recently moved to Manchester, New Hampshire.  Nearby, almost next door except for a sliver of Goffstown, is the small town of Dunbarton.  We had never been there, and enjoyed our visit very much.  It was a lovely fall day, and just barely warm enough for a ride in the little red convertible with the top down.  We found this statue on the common next to the town hall (the white building in the background).

In 1759 Major Caleb Stark, the first child of General John and
Molly Stark, was born in Dunbarton at the home of his 
grandfather now known as the Molly Stark House.  At age 15, 
he left this house and his grandfather, Capt. Caleb Page, on
the eve of the battle of Bunker Hill to join in the American
Revolution.  He represents Dunbarton's own minuteman and
his likeness is embossed on the Town Seal.  He was wounded
 at the Battle of Saratoga and, during the closing stages of the
conflict, served as an adjutant to his famous father.  After the
war, he married Sarah McKinstry and built the Stark Mansion
where he entertained General Lafayette in 1825.  He was tireless
in his pursuit to arrange for payments for service of Revolutionary
War officers and his efforts suceeded when lands in Ohio were
granted as compensation.  He died in Ohio in 1838 and is buried 
at the Stark Cemetery on Mansion Road in Dunbarton.

Statue donated by Laraine and Herbert Allen

Pedestal donated by Marion Crosby from land formerly
part of the estate of Capt. Caleb Page

Memorial Day 2002

This is the Dunbarton, New Hampshire town seal mentioned on the plaque above.

The Molly Stark House is located just a few miles away from the center of Dunbarton, where the statue and town hall are found.  

Built by her father, Capt. Caleb Page, c. 1759, 
this was Molly Page's home in her youth and
as the wife of Gen. John Stark.  Their first
son, Caleb, who served with his illustrious
father during the Revolution, was born here, 
as was Molly's brother, Jeremiah Page, later 
a Superior Court Justice and delgate to
the first Constitutional Convention (1778).
This structure also housed the first Dunbarton
Post office (1834). 

This sign is on the corner across from the Molly Stark House, on the intersection of the Stark Highway (which leads to the center of Dunbarton and the statue) and the road to Concord, New Hampshire.  

General John Stark was born in Londonderry, New Hampshire, and he was a member of Roger's Rangers.  He became an officer in 1757, just before the French and Indian War.  He married Molly Page and had eleven children.  He joined the Revolutionary War right after the Battle of Lexington, and saw action at Bunker Hill, the Battle of Trenton, the Battle of Bennington, all the way to the end of the war when he returned to Manchester, New Hampshire.  General Stark is famous for the phrase "Live Free or Die", which now the New Hampshire State motto.  He lived to the age of 94, and was the last surviving Revolutionary War general. 

Click here to read a previous blog post about General John Stark:

The URL for this post is

Copyright (c) 2014, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

Sunday, October 19, 2014

2014 New England Geneablogger Bash

The New England Genealogy Bloggers assembled in Farley, Massachusetts for another bash!  We had a wonderful time and Sarah Campbell was again a terrific hostess.  Her home was quite historical, and she led tours from the attic to the basement.  Quite a few bloggers attended this year, along with some other local genealogists and historians that Sara had invited.

Besides eating and chatting (and chatting, and chatting, and more chatting), we heard a delightful tale from Shari Strahan about the genealogist Joe Manning and his genealogy projects on the child laborers seen in the famous photographs of Lewis Hine.  It turns out that Joe’s genealogy mentor was Sara!  It’s a long story and I'm so glad she put it into a blog post at this link: .  We also had a long discussion about NERGC 2015 in Providence, Rhode Island (Midge smuggled in an early copy of the schedule and conference brochure).   No keynote speakers at NERGC 2015? Hmmmm….

The fall foliage was spectacular, there was a little rain but it didn’t dampen spirits, and a pumpkin took a nose dive off Sara’s front porch… In other words, we had a terrific time!

These New England Genealogy Bloggers attended the bash:

June Stearns Butka  “Dame Gussie’s Genealogy Rants”

Sara Campbell (our hostess again!)  “Remembering Those who Came Before Us”

Midge Frazel  “Granite in my Blood”

Tim Firkowski  “Sherlock's Genealogical Adventures”

Barbara Matthews, blogger for the Mass. Genealogical Council  “The MCG Sentinel”

Elizabeth Pyle Handler “From Maine to Kentucky”
And she also writes “A Jewish Genealogy Journey”

Lori Lyn Price  “Bridging the Past”

Barbara Proko “Basia’s Polish Family: From Wilno to Worcester”

Heather and Vincent Rojo “Nutfield Genealogy”

Pam Seavey Schafner  “Digging Downeast”

Sheri Strahan

Bill West  “West in New England”

To see a complete list of New England genealogy bloggers, go to the Facebook Group “New England GeneaBloggers” and click on the “about” button to see a long list of wonderful blogs.   If you are a blogger who lives in New England or blogs about mostly New England topics, please join the group and introduce yourself!

The URL for this post is

Copyright © 2014, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Surname Saturday ~ SPARKS of Ipswich, Massachusetts


The first record about John Sparks dates from 24 July 1650 when “John Sparke” was apprenticed to Obadiah Wood “bisquit maker” (baker) in Ipswich, Massachusetts.  [“Records and Files of the Quarterly Courts of Essex County, Massachusetts”, 1911, 1:200] Obadiah Wood was married to Margaret Spark, John’s sister.  In 1664 John was a renter in half of a house owned by Thomas Bishop, an Ipswich merchant.  In this house he had a bake shop and a tavern.  When Bishop died, John had to leave this house and he bought a lot in 1671 where he set up another bakery and “ordinary” (tavern).  He received his first license to “sell beere at a penny a quart, provided he entertain no Town inhabitants in the night, nor suffer any to bring wine or liquors to be drunk in his house.”  He kept this tavern for 20 years until he sold this property to Colonel John Wainwright.  [The Early Homes of the Puritans: And Some Old Ipswich Houses, by Thomas Franklin Waters, 1997, page 49]

There is no mention of John Sparks of Ipswich in either The Great Migration series, or in the book New Englanders in the 1600s by Martin Hollick.

My SPARKS lineage:

Generation 1: John Sparks, born about 1630 probably in England, died before March 1704 in Ipswich, Massachusetts;  probably married first on 26 November 1661 in Boston to Mary Sinnet, daughter of Walter Sinnett; married second about 1666 to Mary Roper, daughter of Walter Roper and Susan Unknown. 

Generation 2:  Elizabeth Sparks, born about 1666 in Ipswich, died 10 April 1692 in Ipswich; married on 25 December 1684 in Ipswich to Jacob Perkins, son of Jacob Perkins and Elizabeth Whipple, as his first wife.

Generation 3:  Elizabeth Perkins, born 18 March 1691 in Ipswich, married David Burnham

Lineage A:

Generation 4:  David Burnham m. Elizabeth Marshall
Generation 5: Amos Burnham m. Sarah Giddings
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 4: Westley Burnham m. Deborah Story

Lineage B1:

Generation 5: Westley Burnham m. Molly Woodbury
Generation 6: Henry Burnham m. Sally Poland
Generation 7: Sarah Ann Burnham m. Samuel Mears
Generation 8: Sarah Burnham Mears m. Joseph Gilman Allen (see above)

Lineage B2:

Generation 5: Sarah Burnham m. Abner Poland
Generation 6: Sally Poland m. Henry Burnham (see above)


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Copyright © 2014, Heather Wilkinson Rojo