Saturday, July 11, 2015

Surname Saturday ~ ABBEY of Salem and Wenham, Massachusetts


John Abbe/Abbey’s origins are unknown, but he was granted land in Salem, Massachusetts on 2 January 1636/7.  He was granted several more land grants, including land on the Beverly side of the Bass River (which it seems so many of my Salem ancestors lived here in this very area, which is now the city of Beverly, in the same neighborhood where I grew up! )

Around 15 February 1642/3 John Abbe was granted land at Enon, where a church was organized and the new town was named Wenham.  He had nine children, and in 1683 he wrote an interesting document, which appears to be like a modern living will.  His eldest son, Thomas had removed to Enfield, Connecticut and he was instructing his son John, Jr., to take care of him and his wife during their old age: 

“Know all men by these presents that I John Abbey (Senr) of Wenham in the County of Essex being sensible of my own and my wives inability to Carry on my affaires So as to prouide for our Comfortable Livelyhood by reason of our age & weakness of Body Attending us by reason thereof Doe make Choice of & Request my son John Abbey as my ffeiofe in trust to take into his hands my house & all my Lands in Wenham together with what right I have in that Land which was sometime Richard Goldsmiths to ocquipie & improue for myn & his muttual Benifit So long as my wife & I or eyther of us shall live: & for his incouringment to maniage my affaires as abovesaid & he provide Comfortably for my owne & my wives maintenance I doe hereby give and Bequeath to him my afforesaid ffeiof all my houses & Lands fforeuer Except what I doe ereby Give out of it to the rest of my Childrin viz Samuell Sarah Marah Rebeca Obadia & Thomas & to each of them as followith viz to Samuell I have alridy Given him a Lott of Land I give him one Shilling more & to all the rest of my Children above mentioned viz Sarah Marah Rebeca Obadia & Thomas two Shillings a peice or to so many of them as shall survive at the decease of my selfe & wife if his heires Shall Continue to maniage & Carry on my affaires as my abovesaid ffeioffe ought to doe then they Shall have the houses and Lands abovesaid as therin ordard & in Confirmation of what is above written I have here unto set my hand & seale Siggned Sealed & Deliverd August the 3 1683 in presence of Thos ffiske Senr, martha ffiske. John Abbey Senr ded acknowledge this writing above written to be his act & deed August ye 3d 1683 before me Samuel Appleton Assistant” 
From The Ancestry of Dr. J. P. Guilford,  by Joan S. Guilford, 2003 Volume II, pages 4 – 5.

The Richard Goldsmith mentioned above was his neighbor, and John Abbey’s youngest son, Obadiah, was his apprentice.  After Richard was killed by lightning in the spring of 1674, John Abbey married his widow on 25 November 1674.  Although he was careful to have that document drawn up before his death, John Abbey apparently died intestate because on the outside of the above document is this inscription from 13 years after his death:

“ John Abbey's Disposale of his Estate 1683 Record In Ips in ye Regr office for ye probate of Will for sd County of Essex Decr 1702 p mee Danl Rogers Regr Administration on the Estate of John Abbey senjr of Wenham. JohnAppleton Esqr. Comissionate d by his Excellency Joseph Dudley Capt.Generll and Governr in Cheif in & over her Majess Province of ye Massachtt Bay in New England, with the advice and Consent of her Majestes Counsell of said province for the Probate of Wills and Granting Lettersof adminstro. Within the said County of Essex &c. To Thomas Abbey of Enfield in ye County of Hampshire son to John Abbey senjr of Wenham-Deceased Intestate-Greeting-Trusting in yr Care and ffidelity I doe by These presents Comitt unto you full power to administer all & singular the Goods, Chattells, Rights & Creditts of the said Deceased & well & ffaithfully dispose of ye same according to law which to him while he Lived & att ye time of his Death did appeartain & belong, to aske sue for demand Levy Receive & Recover and to pay all Debts in which the Deceasd stood bound so farr as his Goods Chattells Rights & Creditts Can extend according to the value thereof, and to make a true & prfect Inventory of all & singular the Goods Chattells Rights and Creditts of the Deceasd and to Exhibit the same into the Registry office of ye sd County att or before the Last Day of ffebruary next Ensueing, and to render a plain & true accott of ye said adminjo upon Oath att orbefore ye Twentieth Day of Decembr which Will bee in ye year of or Lord God One Thousand Seven hundd & Three-and I doe by These prsents Ordaine Constitute and appoint you administratoer of all & singular the Goods Chattells Rights & Creditts of ye Deceasd aforesd.-In Testimony Whereof I have herunto Sett my hand &caused the Seale of said office to be affixed-Dated in Ipswich the 12th Day of Decembr anno. 1702. Annoq.R: Reginae Annae Ang liae &c primo. “

Recorded Book 307, Page 456. Essex Probate Office.

“Know All men by these presents, That We Thomas Abbey of Enfield in ye County of hampshire as principle and Waltar ffairfeild Senj & Thomas Edwards both of Wenham as sureties within His Majesties Province of the Massachusetts Bay in New England are holden and stand firmly bound and obliged unto John Appleton Esqr Judge of the Probate of Wills and granting Administration with in the said County of Essex in the full sum of Two hundred Pounds Currant Money in New England . To be paid unto the said John Appleton Esquire his Successors in the said Office or Assignes. To the true payment whereof. We bind our selves, and each of us, our, and each of our heirs, Executors and Administrators, joyntly and severall y for the whole and in the whole firmly by these presents Sealed with our Seals. Dated the Eleventh day of Decembr Anno Domini. One thousand 702 Annoque Regni Reginae Annae primo. The condition of this present Obligation is such, That if the above-bounden Thomas Abbey administrator to all & singular the Goods, Chattells, Rights & Credits of his ffather John Abbe y Senjr Late of Wenham Deceased to make or cause to be made a true and perfect Inventory of all and singular the Goods, Chattells, Rights and Credits of the said Deceased, which have or shall come to the hands and possession or knowledge of him the said administrator or into the hands and possession of any other person or persons for him. And the same so made, do exhibitor cause to be exhibited into the Registry of the Court of Probate for the aforesaid County of Essex at or before the Last day of ffebruary next ensuing. And the same Goods, Chattells, Rights and Credits of the said Deceased, at the time of Death, which at any time after shall come into the hands and possession of any other person or persons for him do well and truly administer according to Law. And further do make, or cause to be made a just and true Accompt of his said Administration upon Oath, ator before the Twentieth day of Decembr which will be in the year of our Lord, One thousand 703. And all the rest & residue of the said Goods,Chattells , Rights & Credits which shall be found remaining upon the said Administrators Accompt (the same being first examined and allowed of by the Judge or Judges for the time being of Probate of Wills and granting Administrations within the County of Essex aforesaid) shall deliver and pay unto such person or persons respectively as the said Judge or Judges by his or their Decree or Sentence pursuant to Law shall limit and appoint. And if it shall hereafter appear, That any last Will and Testament was made by the said Deceased: And the Executor or Executors therein named do exhibit the same into the Court of Probate for the said County of Essex making request to have it allowed and approved accordingly. If the said administrator within bounden being thereunto required do render and deliver the said Letters of Administration(Approbation o f such Testament being first had and made) unto the said Court. Then the before written obligation to be void and of none effect,or else to abide and remain in full force and virtue. Thomas TA Abbey (mark & seal) Walter fayerfield (seal) Thomas O Edward (seal) Sealed and Delivered in presence of francis Crumpton Daniel Rogers. This Inventory of the Estate of John Abee Senor formerly of Wenham decesed about thirten yere since Intestate we whos names are her vnto subscribed on this twentey-fovrth of febuary in the yere of our lord 17 did at the Request of thomas Abee one of the sons of the decesed and Administrator of his fathers estat or by his order vallew and aprise the said decesed his house and land in Wenham on which to our certain knowleg he lived for many yers and dyed seased of the same as his owne Estat of Inheritance as we ever understod we being his nere neighbors for many yers the sayd decesed his homsted being about twenty and three acers of pland and medow to gether with the housing and fences ther on the apertenances ther onto belonging together with his Right in the Comon all which we vallewed at ninety and two pounds £92-s00-d00.  We also being Informed that the sayd decesed in his lifetime did to acomodate his son Obadiah acording to his desire with a trad for his futer benifett when the sayd Obadiah was eighten yers old give to Richard Goldsmith three yers sarvit of his said son Obadiah and vntill he was one and twentey yers ould to learne him to be a shoemaker and all the sayd time his sayd father did find his sayd son meat and drink and Clothes washing and Lodging which we doe Judg to be worth thirtey pounds. the acount was settled betwen thomas Abee and his fathers Estat by the Children of the sayd decesed in our presents as witness our hands this 24 of the 12th month 1703/2 Richard RH Hutton ( his mark) Joseph ffowler Aprisers. the estate debtor to his sonn thomas Abee for severall things for which our said father John Abee Senor was Indebted to his son thomas Abee before the death of our sayd father John a bee Senor the acount whereof was settled and alowed by vse vnderwritten which debt is thirtey and two pounds £32--s00-d00. as wittnes our hands this 24th febuerary 1702/3 Richard kimball for himself & Rebecc his wife (his mark) mary killam (her mark) Thomas Abbe (his mark) May 18th 1703 Then ye above sd Thomas Abbe made oath to this Inventory Before John Appleton”

Some Abbey resources:

From The Ancestry of Dr. J. P. Guilford,  by Joan S. Guilford, 2003 Volume II, (see pages 3 -21 for John Abbe)

Abbe-Abbey Genealogy: In Memory of John Abbe and his Descendants, by Cleveland Abbe and Josephine Genung Nichols, 1916 [This book is old and has several errors corrected in the Guilford book)

My ABBEY genealogy:

Generation 1:  John Abbey, born about 1613 in England, died 1689 in Wenham, Massachusetts; married about 1634 in England to Mary, mother of nine children; married second to another Mary, widow of Richard Goldsmith, in Wenham on 25 November 1674. 

Generation 2:  Rebecca Abbye, born 1643 in Wenham, died June 1704 in Wenham; married in Wenham on 13 May 1667 to Richard Kimball, son of Henry Kimball and Mary Riddlesdale.  He was born 13 October 1643 in Watertown and died 30 July 1715 in Wenham.  Three children.

Generation 3:  Rebecca Kimball married James Poland
Generation 4:  John Poland married Abigail Davis
Generation 5: Daniel Poland married Sarah Bishop
Generation 6:  Martha Poland married Alexander Mears
Generation 7:  Samuel Mears married Lydia W. Burnham
Generation 8:  Samuel Mears married Sarah Ann Burnham
Generation 9:  Sarah Burnham Mears married Joseph Gilman Allen
Generation 10: Joseph Elmer Allen married Carrie Maude Batchelder
Generation 11:  Stanley Elmer Allen married Gertrude Matilda Hitchings (my grandparents)


Published under a Creative Commons License
Heather Wilkinson Rojo,  "Surname Saturday ~ ABBEY of Salem and Wenham, Massachusetts", Nutfield Genealogy, posted July 4, 2015 (  accessed [access date]). 

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