Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Weathervane Wednesday ~ An Ice Cream Cone

Weathervane Wednesday is an on-going series of photographs I post every week.  I started out by publishing only weather vanes from the Londonderry area, but now I've been finding interesting weather vanes from all over New England.  Sometimes these weather vanes are whimsical, or historical, but all are very unique.  Often, my readers tip me off to some very special and unusual weather vanes.  Today a reader and fellow genealogy blogger sent in this weathervane!

Today's weather vane is from somewhere in Maine.

Do you know the location of weather vane #287?  Scroll down to see the answer...

Today's weathervane was sent in by June Stearns Butka, the author of the New England Roots blog.   This colorful ice cream weather vane is located on a cupola above Dunne's Ice Cream near the Nubble Light House in York, Maine.  I know that I've been to Nubble Light dozens of times, and I never noticed this weathervane.  I was probably too busy looking at the fantastic view of the lighthouse.

But this is a fantastic weathervane.  Colorful weathervanes are hard to find.  It's a charming bit of advertising art, and the weather vane is in an appropriate place here high above the waves on the coast.

Dunne's Ice Cream, York, Maine

June's New England Roots blog:


Heather Wilkinson Rojo, "Weathervane Wednesday ~ An Ice Cream Cone", Nutfield Genealogy, posted November 30, 2016 ( accessed [access date]).

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Tombstone Tuesday ~ Hannah (Raymond) Dodge, Beverly, Massachusetts

This tombstone was photographed at the Old North Beverly Cemetery (Conant Street Cemetery) in Beverly, Massachusetts.

Here Lies
The Body of
Relict of
who departed this Life
May 31st 1783
Aged 84 years

This tombstone has been defaced by someone who sprayed or painted blue paint on the winged soul effigy on Hannah Dodge's carved stone.  I photographed this during a tour of the Old North Beverly Cemetery with members of the Beverly Historical Society and they said an attempt would be made to clean this tombstone.

Hannah Raymond was the daughter of George Raymond and Jerusha Woodbury of Beverly, Massachusetts.  She was born 24 February 1699/1700 in Beverly, and died there on 31 May 1783.  She married Deacon Joshua Dodge in Beverly on 14 June 1716.  He was the son of Joshua Dodge and Joanna Larkin, born 23 September 1694 in Beverly, and died there 20 December 1771.  They had twelve children, all listed in the town clerks record in Beverly (see below).

The family of Joshua and Hannah Dodge.
Births                         Children
Dea. Joshua Dodge died Dec. 20 1771 aged 76.  Hannah his widow died May 31, 1783 aged 83. dau. Geo. & Jerusha Rayment
March 24, 1717- 18 Joanna (??? pub. Mar 4, 1738 Nath'l Balch)                           June 30, 1717
1720 Abigail    d. Mrch 1720                               Oct 11, 1719
August 24, 1721    Joshua                                   Aug. 27, 1721
December 8, 1723   Jerusha  m. William Green Nov. 9, 1742 Rev. Chipman Dec. 8, 1723
April 10, 1726 George                                         May 1, 1726
October 30, 1728   Hannah                                  Nov 24, 1728
January 26, 1730/31 Mary                                   Jan 21, 1731
July 2, 1733  Abigail                                            July 8, 1733
August 27, 1735  Sarah                                        Aug. 31, 1735
January 7, 1743  Mary & Samuel Andrews of Danvers m. Mary Dodge March 3, 1763 by Rev. J. Chipman    Jan. 8, 1743/4
November 2, 1737   Larkin                                  Nov. 6, 1737
February 10, 1739 Israel                                      Feb. 10, 1740
                               Mary                                     Jan. 8, 1744

Mary wf of Mr. Joshua Dodge died in 1766. Lieut. Joshua Dodge & Mrs. Agnes Thorndike m. Aug 12, 1766 Their ch. Elizabeth chd. at 2nd ch. May 17, 1767

Source: "Massachusetts, Town Clerk, Vital and Town Records, 1626-2001," database with images, FamilySearch : 29 September 2016),  Beverly, Essex, Massachusetts, United States, Town clerk offices, Massachusetts; FHL microfilm 760,604.  

Heather Wilkinson Rojo, "Tombstone Tuesday ~  Hannah (Raymond) Dodge, Beverly, Massachusetts", Nutfield Genealogy, posted November 29, 2016,  ( accessed [access date]).

Monday, November 28, 2016

December 2016 Genealogy and Local History Calendar

Genealogy Events Calendar

For last minute updates, see the Nutfield Genealogy Facebook page at this link: 


December 1, Thursday, 7pm, Finding Cousins Using DNA, at the McCarthy Meeting Room of the Chelmsford Public Library, Chelmsford, Massachusetts,  sponsored by the Chelmsford Genealogy Club and presented by Pam Holland.  

December 1, Thursday, 6pm, An Evening at NEHGS: Imagining Ichabod, at the New England Historic Genealogical Society, 99 – 101 Newbury Street, Boston, Massachusetts. Presented by author Paula Bennett, who will share how she recreated elements of the past in the General Ichabod Goodwin House in southern Maine.   $20 per person, please register here:

December 2, Friday, noon, From Ginger to Jell-O: An Unexpected Christmas History, part of the First Friday series at the New England Historic Genealogical Society, 99 – 101 Newbury Street, Boston.  Free to the public.  Presented by Clara Silverstein, she traces the authentic history of popular foods of the 1770s, 1850s and 1930s. 

December 3, Saturday, 10am, Genealogical Software Choices, at the Worcester Public Library, Worcester, Massachusetts.  Sponsored by the Worcester Chapter of the Massachusetts Society of Genealogists, presented by Richard Reid.  Both Windows and Mac programs will be covered.  Attendees are encouraged to bring friends, as well as a nonalcoholic beverage. Snacks will be provided.  Contact Nancy Schultzberg at 774-573- 9529 for more information.  Visit 

December 3, Saturday, 2pm,  A Re-Awakened Boston Public Library:  Geenalogical Resources and Services at the BPL and Map Center, at the Chelmsford Public Library, 25 Boston Road, Chelmsford, Massachusetts, sponsored by the Chelmsford Genealogy Club. Presented by Linda MacIver, retired BPL genealogy specialist with Evan Thornberry, reference and geospatial librarian at the Leventhal Map Center.

December 3, Saturday, 10am, The History of United States Immigration Policies, the Merrimack Valley Chapter of the Massachusetts Society of Genealogists, at the Georgetown Peabody Library, 2 Maple Street, Georgetown, Massachusetts, sponsored by the Northern Essex Community College, and presented by Dr. Ligia Domenech of  NECC.  Free to the public. 

December 3, Saturday, 10am, New Visitor Tour of NEHGS, at the New England Historic Genealogical Society, 99 – 101 Newbury Street, Boston, Massachusetts.  Free to the public.  Tour attendees are welcome to use the library following the tour. No registration necessary.

December 3, Saturday, 1 – 3pm, A Plentiful Country:  Letters from Maine’s Thomas Gorges, at the Massachusetts Historical Society, 1154 Boylston Street, Boston, Massachusetts.  A discussion led by UMass Lowell associate professor Abby Chandler.  Free to the public, please register here:   Contact or questions? or call 917-553-4486 

December 4,  Sunday, 3:30 pm, Fall 2016 Genealogy Series:  Canada: That Big Place Up North, at the Beverly Public Library, 32 Essex Street, Beverly, Massachusetts.  Free to adults.  No signup needed.  Questions?  Please email or call 978-921-6062 

December 5, Monday, 6pm,  A Revolution in Color:  The World of John Singleton Copley, at the Massachusetts Historical Society, 1154 Boylston Street, Boston, Massachusetts, $10 registration cost for non-members.  Presented by author Jane Kamensky, who will discuss the book by the same title.

December 7, Wednesday, 7pm, Beginning the Journey of Genealogy, at the Robbins Library, 700 Massachusetts Avenue, Arlington, Massachusetts, presented by genealogist Jake Fletcher.  Free to the public.

December 7, Wednesday, 7pm,  The Old Colony at Pearl Harbor:  75 Years since “Infamy”, at the Old Colony History Museum, 66 Church Green, Taunton, Massachusetts.  Free to the public, refreshments at 6:30pm.  Presented by the curator of collections, Brian Miskell, about some of the men from the Old Colony region who were serving in Hawaii on 7 December 1941. 

December 8, Thursday, 5:30pm, The Launch of Rhode Island’s Revolutionary Artillery, at the Newport Historical Society, 82 Touro Street, Newport, Rhode Island, $5 per person, $1 for members, free to military with ID. presented by author J.L. Bell, who wrote The Road to Concord: How Four Stolen Cannon Ignited the Revolutionary War

December 9,  Friday, 5pm, Three Centuries of Christmas Preview Party, at the Webb-Deane-Stevens Museum, 211 Main Street, Wethersfield, Connecticut.  Food, wine, ale, holiday music and chat with Mr. and Mrs. Silas Deane, Mrs. Claus, and guides in period dress.  $30 members, $35 non members.  Tickets at this website

December 10, Saturday, 2pm, Workers at the Old Schwamb Mill: Their Lives in Detail, at the Old Schwarmb Mill, 17 Mill Lane, Arlington, Massachusetts.  A talk by Dermot Whittaker.  At 3pm there will be an opening reception for the Annual Schwamb Mill History Exhibit.  Free to the public.

December 10, Saturday, 10am, Hearth Cooking: Christmas Fare, at the Monadnock Center for History and Culture, 19 Grove Street, Peterborough, New Hampshire.  Free with museum admission.  Learn how to cook like the 1830s. 

December 10, Saturday,  10am – 4pm, Coolidge Holiday Open House, at the President Calvin Coolidge State Historic Site, Plymouth Notch, Vermont,  Visit the Coolidge birthplace decorated for Christmas as it would have been in 1872 when Calvin was born.  Sleigh or wagon rides, music, crafts, food and a special cancellation at the historic Plymouth post office.  Free to the public.

December 10,  Saturday, 11am, Flying for Uncle Sam – Aviators in the Great War, at the New Hampshire Aviation Historical Society, 27 Navigator Road, Londonderry, New Hampshire.  Presented by Byron O. Champlin.  Free with admission.

December 10, Saturday, 7:30 – 11:30pm, Denholms for the Holidays, at the historic Denholms department store building in Worcester, Massachusetts.  See the former store all decorated and lit up for the first time in over 40 years. Refreshments, Vintage Fashion Show, Valet Parking.  $65 members, general public $75.  RSVP to Preservation Worcester 508-754-8760 to reserve a ticket.

December 14, Wednesday, 10am - noon,  Mill Girls,   at the Granite State College, 25 Hall Street, Concord, New Hampshire.  Presented by Peg Fargo.  Members of OLLI (Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at Granite State College)  $15, additional fee of $20 for non-members.  Please see the online catalog  for more information and registration – pages 64 -65 for course description. 

December 14, Wednesday, 6pm, Nathaniel Bowditch and the Power of Numbers, at the Massachusetts Historical Society,  1154 Boylston Street, Boston, Massachusetts.  Presented by Tamara Plakins Thornton, author of the book by the same name.  Free to the public.

December 16, Friday, 6:30pm, The 243rd Anniversary Boston Tea Party Reenactment, at the Old South Meeting House, 310 Washington Street, Boston, Massachusetts.  Join Sam Adams, Paul Revere and John Hancock for a firey debate, then follow the Sons of Liberty to the Boston Harbor to make salt water tea!  $30 – tickets sell out fast, call 800- 838-3006.  

December 17, Saturday, 10am, New Visitor Tour of NEHGS, at the New England Historic Genealogical Society, 99 – 101 Newbury Street, Boston, Massachusetts.  Free to the public.  Tour attendees are welcome to use the library following the tour. No registration necessary.

January 6, Friday, noon, First Friday Lecture:  Unexpected Genealogy Adventures in the Czech Republic, at the New England Historic Genealogical Society, 99 – 101 Newbury Street, Boston, Massachusetts.  Free to the public.  Presented by Alex Woodle.

January 18, Wednesday, 7:30pm, A Revolution in Color:  The World of John Singleton Copley, at the Royall House & Slave Quarters, 15 George Street, Medford, Massachusetts.  Presented by author Jane Kamensky, who will discuss the book by the same title.

January 19, Thursday, 1pm, Strategies for Tackling Your Genealogy Brickwall presented by Jake Fletcher, at the Wayland Free Public Library, 5 Concord Road, Wayland, Massachusetts.  Free to the public.

January 24, Tuesday, 7pm, Stories of Sacrifice:  Researching your Veteran Ancestors, at the Central Massachusetts Genealogical Society, 22 Elm Street, Gardner, Massachusetts.  Presented by genealogist Jake Fletcher. 

Looking to the future:

April 2017, NERGC 2017, at the Mass Mutual Center, 1277 Main Street, Springfield, Massachusetts


Heather Wilkinson Rojo, "December 2016 Genealogy and Local History Calendar", Nutfield Genealogy, posted November 28, 2016, ( accessed [access date]). 

Saturday, November 26, 2016

Surname Saturday ~ Susannah UNKNOWN, wife of Thomas Burnham

Who was Susannah, wife of Thomas Burnham of Ipswich, Massachusetts, my 7th great grandfather?

According to a microfilm at the Family History Library “Burnham Family Lineage Charts”, a book by Walter J. Burnham, 1966 a Thomas Burnham was born on 30 September 1673 and married 30 September 1700 to a woman named Susannah or Margaret Boardman, born 5 April 1681.  Both died in 1748.  According to the vital records of Ipswich, Massachusetts, another Thomas Burnham (my 1st cousin 9 generations removed, son of James Burnham (1650 – 1729), married Margaret Boardman on 30 September 1708 in Ipswich.   These two Thomas Burnhams are two different people.  Susannah is not Margaret Boardman.  

In the book Burnham Genealogy, written by Roderick Henry Burnham in 1869 my 7th great grandfather, Thomas Burnham, married a Susannah, maiden name unknown.  They are not listed in the vital records.  They had six children, including a son Nathan who died at Fort Ticonderoga during the French and Indian War in 1758 . His son, Nathan, Jr. , was an early settler at Dunbarton, New Hampshire.  

So who was Susannah?  She would be my 7th great grandmother and I cannot find her in the primary source records.  Nor is their son in the vital records – Stephen Burnham, my 6th great grandfather, who removed from Essex County and went to Amherst, New Hampshire to the part of town that is now the town of Milford.  Stephen is member #3 of the first nineteen members of the First Congregational Church in Milford, founded in 1788.  His name is on the first list of tax payers in Milford, 1 April 1794. 

Stephen Burnham and his wife, Mary Andrews, had seven sons who all served in the Revolutionary War.  Colonel Joshua Burnham, Susannah’s grandson, my 5th great grandfather.  Colonel Burnham lived on his parents land in Milford, New Hampshire where he built a tavern that still stands on North River Road.  It is not far from where I live now.

Does anyone have a clue to the identity of Susannah?

My lineage from Susannah UNKNOWN:

Generation 1:  Susannah UNKNOWN, married Thomas Burnham, son of John Burnham and Elizabeth Wells.  Six children.

Generation 2: Stephen Burnham, born about 1715 in Ipswich, died about 1790 in Milford, New Hampshire; married 16 August 1735 in Ipswich to Mary Andrews, daughter of Thomas Andrews and Mary Smith.  She was born about 1712 in Ipswich. Thirteen children.

Generation 3:  Colonel Joshua Burnham, born 26 January 1754 in Gloucester, died 7 June 1835 in Milford, New Hampshire; married on 21 January 1779 to Jemima Wyman, daughter of Increase Wyman and Catherine UNKNOWN.  She was born 10 February 1757 in Billerica, and died 6 September 1843 in South Boston. Eleven children.

Generation 4:  Jemima Burnham, born 9 May 1783 in Milford, died 5 August 1868 at 88 Emerson Street in South Boston; married on 22 November 1810 to Romanus Emerson, son of John Emerson and Katherine Eaton.  He was born 1 September 1782 in Townsend, and died 10 October 1852 in South Boston. Seven children.

Generation 5:  George Emerson m. Mary Esther Younger
Generation 6: Mary Katharine Emerson m. George E. Batchlder
Generation 7: Carrie Maude Batchelder m. Joseph Elmer Allen
Generation 8:  Stanley Elmer Allen m. Gertrude Matilda Hitchings (my grandparents)

Here are a few more ancestresses with UNKNOWN maiden names or unknown parents:

Catherine UNKNOWN, wife of Increase WYMAN (b. 1732) Billerica, Massachusetts

Margery UNKNOWN, (d. 1687) wife of three different men who were all my 10th great grandfathers!  Believe it or not!  William Godfrey (d. 1671), Thomas Webster (1570 – 1634), and John Marrian, all of seacoast New Hampshire. 

Hannah SMITH married George Lillie in 1659 in Reading, Massachusetts.  Who are her parents?

UNKNOWN wife of William BATES (about 1675 – before 1731), resident of Rye?, New Hampshire 

Margaret WELCH (about 1796 – 1860 ) married  Captain Richard LOCKE 1823 in Chichester, New Hampshire.  She might be from Kittery, Maine.

Nancy Thompson (1804 – after 1847) married Jonathan BATCHELDER in 1822 in Belmont, New Hampshire. 


Heather Wilkinson Rojo, "Surname Saturday ~ Susannah UNKNOWN, wife of Thomas Burnham", Nutfield Genealogy,  posted Novemberr  26, 2016, ( accessed [access date]). 

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Weathervane Wednesday ~ A Piper Cub plane

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

Today's weather vane is from somewhere in New Hampshire.

Do you know the location of weather vane #286?  Scroll down to see the answer...

This cute little weathervane was photographed on Henry Bridge Road in Goffstown, New Hampshire.  Over the ell is a small, three dimensional plane, like a single engine Piper Cub.  This weather vane is incredibly detailed, and very visible from the street.

Perhaps someone in the house once owned a plane, or was a pilot?  Little single engine airplanes are usually the first airplane someone might own.  It is the type of airplane used by many flying schools, too.  These planes have been around for more than 75 years, and are still popular.

An article about the Piper Cub from Flying magazine:

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


Heather Wilkinson Rojo, "Weathervane Wednesday ~ A Piper Cub plane", Nutfield Genealogy, posted November 23, 2016, (  accessed [access date]).

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Tombstone Tuesday ~ Nathaniel and Rebecca Raymond, Beverly, Massachusetts

This double tombstone was photographed at the Old North Beverly (Conant Street) Cemetery in Beverly, Massachusetts.  Most of the burials here were parishioners of the Second Congregational Church (Second Parish).  

Here lyes Buried                     Here lyes Buried
the Body of Mr.                     the Body of Mrs
Who Departed this                Wife to NATHANIEL
Life Janry ye 8 1749               RAYMOND  Who
Aged 78 Years                         Departed this life
& 10 Months                          Decr ye 2d 1760
                                                  Aged 80 Years
                                                  & 11 Months

Nathaniel Raymond was the son of John Rayment and Judith Glover, born on 15 March 1670/ 71 in Beverly, and died 8 January 1749/50 in Beverly.  He married Rebecca, daughter of Lot Conant and Elizabeth Walton, granddaughter of founding father Roger Conant.  Rebecca was born 31 January 1671 in Beverly and died 5 December 1760 in Beverly.  They had eight children.   One of their daughters, Mary Raymond (born 1710) married my 5th great grand uncle, William Preston (1705 – 1766) and resided in Chester, New Hampshire.  Another son, George Raymond (1707 – 1807) married Abigail Kettle (1710 – 1786), my 6th great aunt born in Charlestown, Massachusetts.


Heather Wilkinson Rojo, "Tombstone Tuesday ~ Nathaniel and Rebecca Raymond, Beverly, Massachusetts", Nutfield Genealogy, posted November 22, 2016, ( accessed [access date]).

Saturday, November 19, 2016

Surname Saturday ~ HART of Watertown, Reading and Lynnfield, Massachusetts

Examination of a Witch
T.H. Matteson, 1853


There was a Samuel Hart living in Lynn, Massachusetts at the same time as Isaac Hart, but they are not known to be kin – even though Isaac Hart had a son named Samuel.

Isaac Hart, my 8th great grandfather, arrived in Watertown aboard The Rose in 1636 as the servant to Richard Carver.  In 1642 he had five acres in Watertown. He then removed to Reading by 1648 when his wife was listed as member of the church.  He had married Elizabeth Hutchinson, sometimes recorded as Hutchins, the daughter of Thomas Hutchins and Anne Browne.  Isaac bought land from his father-in-law near the border of the Saugus, Reading and Lynnfield lines, which he later left to his son Samuel.  The Isaac Hart homestead is still standing in Lynn. 

Elizabeth was brought before her church in Reading in 1652 for not harboring travelers that had requested aide.  In 1655 she was brought before the Puritan church deacons again for “contempt of authority”.   Elizabeth Hart was accused of being a witch in March of 1692.  In October her son, Thomas, petitioned for his mother’s innocence, but she was not released until December.

I descend from Isaac’s son Adam.  Adam’s sister, Deborah Hart, married my 7th great uncle, Benjamin Proctor. I descend from Benjamin’s two siblings, Abigail Proctor Varney (1639 – 1732) and John Proctor (1631 – 1692) who was hanged as a witch during the witch hysteria.

Adam Hart, my 7th great grandfather,  married Elizabeth Collston, daughter of Adam Collston and Mary Dustin.  Elizabeth, her mother, aunt, and grandmother were all accused and arrested for witchcraft in 1692.  Elizabeth, only sixteen years old, escaped imprisonment twice!  Adam married second to Abigail Deal, and third to Dorcas Brown. .  You can read more about Elizabeth and the Collston family at this link:

Adam Hart was named the father of Elizabeth Collston's illegitimate baby a short time before they married.  After marriage about 1704, he was named the baby's guardian, but the child was known in records as Mary COLLSTON not Mary Hart.  See Genealogical History of the town of Reading, Mass., by Hon. Lilley Eaton, page 85. 

Witchcraft accusations abound in this family!  In 1692 Adam Hart's mother, his wife and the women of her family were all accused of witchcraft and imprisoned.  And these families of witch trial victims tended to intermarry.  Adam and Elizabeth’s grandson, Jonathan Flint (my 5th great grandfather) married Lydia Proctor, the great granddaughter of the John Proctor, mentioned above, who was hanged in 1692.  But strangely, Jonathan’s own grandfather was William Dounton, who was infamously known as the cruel jailor of the Salem Gaol where many victims were imprisoned.  Some intermarriages cannot be explained.

Some HART resources:

Genealogical History of Samuel Hartt from London, England to Lynn, Mass., 1640 And Descendants, by James Morrison Hart, Pasadena, CA, 1903

“Isaac Hart and Samuel Hart”, The Essex Genealogist, Volume 18, pages 40 – 46.

My HART genealogy:

Generation 1:  Isaac Hart, born about 1614 in England, died 10 February 1699 in Lynnfield, Massachusetts married about 1650 to Elizabeth Hutchinson, daughter of Thomas Hutchinson and Anne Browne.  She died 28 November 1700.  Seven children.

Generation 2:  Adam Hart, born 4 February 1666 in Lynnfield, died 17 September 1745 in Reading; married about 1703 to Elizabeth Collston, daughter of Adam Collston and Mary Dustin.  She was born 9 October 1676.  Two children.

Generation 3:  Mary Collston, born 22 September 1704 in Reading; married on 18 February 1723 in Reading to Jonathan Flint, son of Thomas Flint and Mary Dounton.  He was born 8 November 1689 in Salem Village (now Danvers, Massachusetts).  Two children.

Generation 4: Jonathan Flint, born 11 August 1730 in Reading, died 1800 in Reading; married on 1 August 1751 in Salem to Lydia Proctor, daughter of John Proctor and Lydia Waters.  She was born 31 March 1730 in Salem.  Eight children.

Generation 5:  John Flint, born 3 April 1761 in North Reading, died 26 August 1836 in North Reading; married Phebe Flint as his second wife.  She was the daughter of George Flint and Hannah Phelps, born 8 March 1763 in North Reading, died December 1846 in North Reading.  Eight children.
Generation 6: Olive Flint, born 27 July 1805 in North Reading, died 26 November 1875 in Peabody, Massachusetts; married on 3 September 1826 in Reading to Luther Simonds Munroe.  He was the son of Andrew Munroe and Ruth Simonds, born 10 May 1805 in Danvers, died 23 December 1851 in Danvers.  Six children.

Generation 7: Phebe Cross Munroe m. Robert Wilson Wilson
Generation 8:  Albert Munroe Wilkinson m. Isabella Lyons Bill
Generation 9: Donald Munroe Wilkinson m. Bertha Louise Roberts (my grandparents)

UPDATE 26 October 2022 - 
Click here for a link to "My Hartt - The Descendants of Isaac and Elizabeth Hartt"  


To cite/link to this blog post: Heather Wilkinson Rojo, "Surname Saturday ~ HART of Watertown, Reading and Lynnfield, Massachusetts", Nutfield Genealogy, posted November 19, 2016, ( accessed [access date]). 

Friday, November 18, 2016

New Hampshire Thanksgiving Proclamation 2016

Today the New Hampshire Governor, Maggie Hassan, signed the Thanksgiving Proclamation at the statehouse in Concord, along with members of the Executive Council and members of the New Hampshire Mayflower Society.

photo by Priscilla Elaine Theberge

After the ceremony, members of the New Hampshire Mayflower Society gathered on the statehouse steps.  NH Mayflower Governor Richard H. Tivey swore in Gayle Richards as a new member of the Board of Assistants

The members also toured the statehouse and gathered in front of the Mayflower plaque by the north back door of the statehouse.  It was placed here on 21 November 1936 by the New Hampshire Mayflower Society.

For more information about the New Hampshire Mayflower Society, please see the website:


Heather Wilkinson Rojo, "New Hampshire Thanksgiving Proclamation 2016", Nutfield Genealogy, posted 18 November 2016,  (  accessed [access date]).

The Five Kernels of Corn Myth at Thanksgiving

I originally blogged about the Thanksgiving Five Kernels of Corn in 2011, but since that time I’ve learned a lot about this quaint tradition.  I decided to repost a new update on this myth.

For generations New Englanders, and some Mayflower families that moved south and west, practiced a quaint little tradition at their Thanksgiving table.  Each place setting was given five kernels of parched corn, often along with a card that had this little poem, or a similar one:

Five Kernels
(author unknown)

The first winter in Plymouth was very cold
And hunger abounded as the the year unrolled.
Some days each only had five kernels of corn.
Their lives were becoming sad and forlorn.

But then spring came and their harvest grew.
The pilgrims began to thrive and their spirits did, too.
But they never forgot the bleak times they did abate
So on Thanksgiving they’d put five kernels on each plate.

The first kernel  reminded them of the autumn beauty.
The second one of the freedom that they held dearly.
The third reminded of their love and care for each other
And the fourth was for dear friends like the Indian brother.

The fifth kernel reminded of God’s love and care for all.
So as you prepare and celebrate Thanksgiving this fall,
Remember to put five little kernels on each dinner plate
To honor the pilgrims and give thanks for our good fate.

Families that follow this tradition don’t use popcorn (you would break your teeth), but they purchase roasted sweet corn (one brand name is "Corn Nuts") .  You can make this yourself or search for it online or in your local market.  Or open up a can of corn and count out the kernels onto the plates. Some Mayflower Societies pass out candy corn.  This tradition was passed on for many, many years, and is mentioned in books, such as the Little House books by Laura Ingalls Wilder (which makes sense because I have Ingalls ancestors from Lynn, Massachusetts, just like the author).  

It’s very true that the Mayflower passengers suffered greatly during their first winter here in 1620 until the spring of 1621.  Half of their company, fifty out of 102 passengers died of sickness and exposure.  It is also true that the following spring they planted a crop with help from several native members of the Wampanoag nation, which was followed by a successful first harvest.  They celebrated a traditional English “Harvest Home” celebration that fall, just like they always did at home in Europe, and were joined by many members of the local Wampanoag tribe.

You can learn more about how the myth of the Five Kernels started in a pamphlet published by the General Society of Mayflower Descendants in the 1950s.  Jim Baker, a former research at the Plimoth Plantation Museum, wrote this in 1998.

From Jim Baker:

"However, this never happened. There is no mention of the supposed division in any of the contemporary sources, nor is there any reason to believe that the colonial leaders would actually issue a daily corn ration of five kernals, which was not enough to be of any nutritional benefit. Instead, they simply ran out at the end of the spring season in April when they planted what they had put aside as seed." As J. A. Goodwin (1888) observed concerning the tradition, "the story rests on no foundation, and is opposed to common-sense." 1

Similarly, the effect of the suffering may be exaggerated. Bradford simply notes they were very badly supplied and lacked corn entirely for two or three months, being reduced to living on water, fish, shellfish, ground nuts and a few water fowl, and "now and then a deer." 2 As this was a healthy if highly unsatisfactory diet to the colonists, no one died or "succombed." Winslow does mention that he had seen "... some seasons at noon I have seen men stagger by reason of faintness for want of food", yet he does not give a specific date for this. As he then continues "...yet ere night, by the good providence and blessing of God, we have enjoyed such plenty as though the windows of heaven had been opened unto us.” 3 the use of the phrase may be more a general comment that a specific description. 

Just as Plymouth Rock came to symbolize the heroic and providential nature of the Mayflower voyage, some icon was required to celebrate the Plymouth colonists’ courageous perseverance through their suffering and deprivation. The five kernals were adopted to point this moral at some point after the American Revolution. Their appearance is first recorded at the 1820 Forefathers’ Day dinner when the five symbolic parched corns was placed on each plate to remind the diners of "the time in 1623, when that was the proportion allowed to each individual on account of scarcity." 4

The story was related by subsequent writers such as Frances Baylies (1866) 5 and Joseph Banvard (1851)6 , but after the Bradford manuscript had been found and published and no evidence for the tradition was discovered, the Five Kernels myth gradually faded from public memory, and is seldom referred to today.

Another reference to five kernels of corn occurs in quite a different context. The Harlow Old Fort House (ca. 1677) Museum in Plymouth has been holding an annual juvenile pageant called "The Corn Planting" each May since before 1928. 7 A group of costumed school children enact a short re-enactment of the planting of corn by Squanto and the colonists which is witnessed by other students from local schools. 

As part of this tradition, the hills of corn are each supplied with five kernels of corn, and the following rhyme is recited: 
Five kernels of corn in a row
One for the blackbird, one for the crow,
One for the cutworm and two to grow. 8"
                                                                      JWB 12/14/98

1. Godwin, John A. The Pilgrim Republic. Boston: Ticknor & Co., 1888, p. 242.
2. Bradford, William. Of Plymouth Plantation. S.E. Morison, ed. NY: Knopf, 1970, p. 123
3. Winslow, Edward. "Good Newes from New England" in Alexander Young. Chronicles of the Pilgrim Fathers. Boston: Charles C. Little and James Brown, 1844, pp. 354-554. Thacher, James. History of Plymouth. Boston: Marsh, Capon & Lyon, 1832, p. 248.
5. Frances Baylies. An Historical Memoir of the Colony of New Plymouth Boston: Wiggin & Lunt 1866, p. 121
6. Joseph Banvard. Plymouth and the Pilgrims, Boston: Gould and Lincoln, 1851, p. 136
7. Barker, Amy H. A History of the Plymouth Antiquarian Society. Plymouth: Plymouth Antiquarian Society, 1959.
8. Plimoth Colony Cook Book . Sally Erath, ed. Plymouth: Plymouth: Antiquarian Society, 1981, p. 41

There are many myths surrounding the Pilgrims.  Plymouth Rock is definitely a myth.  Who would land a boat on a rock? But now it is a National Historic Site.  Myles Standish did not court Priscilla Mullins, but Longfellow's poem is one of the most famous he ever wrote.  Although the myth of the Five Kernels was debunked in the 1950s, many families continue this tradition.  Americans love to count their blessings at Thanksgiving, and this little story and poem is part of that custom.   I know that we still do it at our Thanksgiving table, but I usually follow up with “Here’s what really happened” 30 second explanation.  Perhaps it is time for someone to write up a new, more accurate poem? 

My original blog post “Five Kernels of Corn for Thanksgiving” from 20 November 2011 is at this link:   

Within a few hours of publishing this post I had volumes of email and comments that made me publish a second update at this link:


To Cite/Link to this blog post: Heather Wilkinson Rojo, "The Five Kernels of Corn Myth at Thanksgiving", Nutfield Genealogy, posted November 18, 2016, ( accessed [access date]).

Thursday, November 17, 2016

My Mayflower Passenger Ancestors

It's that time of the year!  Near Thanksgiving everyone wonders "Did my ancestors come on the Mayflower?"  If you have colonial New England ancestry, you might have had a Pilgrim in your family tree.  It is estimated that over 20 million people around the world have an ancestor who arrived in Plymouth in 1620 aboard the Mayflower.

Here are my own lineages in alphabetical order with Mayflower passenger ancestors in bold:

Isaac Allerton(abt 1586 – 1659)and Mary Norris (1587 – 1621-died during  the “starving time” in the first winter on Cape Cod)
Remember Allerton (abt 1614 – 1656) and Moses Maverick
Abigail Maverick and Samuel Ward
Martha Ward and John Tuthill
Martha Tuthill and Mark Haskell
Lucy Haskell and Jabez Treadwell
Nathaniel Treadwell and Mary Hovey
Jabez Treadwell and Betsey Jillings Homan
Eliza Ann Treadwell and Abijah Hitchings
Abijah Franklin Hitchings and Hannah Eliza Lewis
Arthur Treadwell Hitchings and Florence Etta Hoogerzeil
Gertrude Matilda Hitchings and Stanley Elmer Allen (my maternal grandparents)

Edward Doty (abt 1599 – 1635) and Faith Clark
Desire Doty and Alexander Standish
Desire Standish and Nathan Weston
Nathan Weston and Hannah Everson
Zadoc Weston and Mary Clements
Matilda Weston and Joseph Edwin Healey
Mary Etta Healey and Peter Hoogerzeil
Florence Etta Hoogerzeil and Arthur Treadwell Hitchings
Gertrude Matilda Hitchings and Stanley Elmer Allen (my maternal grandparents)

John Tilley (abt 1571- 1620) and Joan Hurst (abt 1568 – 1621) both died in “starving time”
Elizabeth Tilley (1607 – 1687) and John Howland (1592 – 1673)
Hope Howland and John Chipman
Hannah Chipman and Thomas Huckins
Hope Huckins and Benjamin Hamblin
Hannah Hamblin and Jonathan Crosby
Ebenezer Crosby and Elizabeth Robinson
Rebecca Crosby and Comfort Haley
Joseph Edwin Healey and Matilda Weston
Mary Etta Healey and Peter Hoogerzeil
Florence Etta Hoogerzeil and Arthur Treadwell Hitchings
Gertrude Matilda Hitchings and Stanley Elmer Allen (my maternal grandparents)

John Tilley (abt 1571- 1620) and Joan Hurst (abt 1568 – 1621) both died in “starving time”
Elizabeth Tilley (1607 – 1687) and John Howland (1592 – 1673)
Desire Howland and John Gorham
Desire Gorham and John Hawes
Elizabeth Hawes and Thomas Daggett
Elizabeth Daggett and John Butler
Keziah Butler and Samuel Osborn
Samuel Osborn and Sarah Wass
Sarah Osborn and Charles Skinner
Ann Skinner and Thomas Ratchford Lyons
Isabella Lyons and Rev. Ingraham Ebenezer Bill
Caleb Rand Bill and Ann Margaret Bollman
Isabella Lyons Bill and Albert Munroe Wilkinson
Donald Munroe Wilkinson and Bertha Louise Roberts (my paternal grandparents)

George Soule ( abt 1593 – 1680) and Mary Beckett
John Soule and Rebecca Simonson
 Rebecca Soule and Edmund Weston
Nathan Weston and Desire Standish
Nathan Weston and Hannah Everson
Zadoc Weston and Mary Clements
Matilda Weston and Joseph Edwin Healey
Mary Etta Healey and Peter Hoogerzeil
Florence Etta Hoogerzeil and Arthur Treadwell Hitchings
Gertrude Matilda Hitchings and Stanley Elmer Allen (my maternal grandparents)

Captain Myles Standish (abt 1584 – 1656) and Barbara Unknown
Alexander Standish and Desire Doty
Desire Standish and Nathan Weston
Nathan Weston and Hannah Everson
Zadoc Weston and Mary Clements
Matilda Weston and Joseph Edwin Healey
Mary Etta Healey and Peter Hoogerzeil
Florence Etta Hoogerzeil and Arthur Treadwell Hitchings
Gertrude Matilda Hitchings and Stanley Elmer Allen (my maternal grandparents)

For information about Mayflower passengers online see Caleb Johnson’s Mayflower History at

For information about the Mayflower Society see

Some genealogy tips on finding Mayflower ancestors (a blog post from 2015 "Ten Things to Know about Researching a Pilgrim in your Family Tree")


Heather Wilkinson Rojo, "My Mayflower Passenger Ancestors", Nutfield Genealogy, posted November 17, 2016, ( acceessed [access date]). 

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Weathervane Wednesday ~ An alpine skier

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

Today's weather vane is from somewhere in New Hampshire.

Do you know the location of weather vane #285?  Scroll down to see the answer...

This weathervane was spotted above the Nails and Spa business in Lincoln, New Hampshire.  Lincoln is a year round resort community at the entrance to the Kancamagus Trail and the White Mountain National Forest, near Loon Mountain Ski area.  Years ago Lincoln was mostly a winter resort because of the skiing, but now it is visited by tourists all year long.  Many of the small ski shops along Main Street (Route 112) have become other types of businesses, but the skier weathervane remains above this spa.

This two dimensional copper weathervane still has the shiny patina on the skier figure and the cupola.  I love the details such as the flying scarf, the baskets on the ski poles, and the wire bindings on the ski boots.

Lincoln Nails and Spa website

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


Heather Wilkinson Rojo, "Weathervane Wednesday ~ An alpine skier", Nutfield Genealogy, posted November 16, 2016,  ( accessed [access date]).

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Tombstone Tuesday ~ Old North Beverly Cemetery

Last year we went to North Beverly looking for two old burial grounds.  We found the Dodge's Row Burying Ground, which was very, very well hidden (you can read all about that adventure HERE) and we saw the entrance to the Old North Beverly Cemetery but didn't have time to explore.  This past month we attended the Old Planter Reunion and one of the activities on the schedule was a tour of the Old North Beverly Cemetery.  We happily joined them!  It was well narrated by members of the Beverly Historical Society, who took the time to research the surnames of the attendees and featured some of the ancestors of these names on the tour.

This cemetery is difficult to find.  There is no sign, and it is not visible from the road.  There is no parking area, but the Second Congregational Church is nearby.   The North Beverly Cemetery is located right behind the church, but this is not the OLD original cemetery for the church.   Park at the church and then walk back along Conant Street towards Route 1A/Dodge Street (past two houses), and you will see the entrance gate.  The address for this gate is approximately 27 Conant Street if you are using a GPS.  There are two iron gates here.  Take the one that is located right against the wooden stockade fence of the house next door.

Entrance gate on Conant Street

Walk along the fence

The Old North Beverly Cemetery

Old Cemeteries, Abbott and Conant Streets, William J. Berry, 1901-4, page 4

In the archives at the Beverly City Hall you can find this old index and plot map for the Old North Beverly Cemetery.  There is a copy at the Beverly Public Library. 

Old Cemeteries, Abbott and Conant Streets, William J. Berry, 901-4, plan no. 4, page 8. 

The second church was established about 1715, and the oldest surviving gravestone here is for Joseph Herrick in 1717/18.   You will see as you walk around that the stones are not in good condition, although the graveyard is very well maintained.  Some of the gravestones have been saved by encasing them in concrete, such as Joseph Herrick's stone (below).  Joseph Herrick (1645 - 1717/18) is my 10th great grand uncle- I descend from his brother Henry Herrick (1640 - 1702).  

OF IS AGE 1717 18

Another interesting gravestone belonged to Rev. John Chipman, the first minister at the second parish.  It was entirely in Latin, and located right next to the entrance of the burial ground.  He was married to Rebecca Hale as his first wife, and her stone was next to Rev. Chipman's gravestone.  Rev. John Chipman (1691 - 1775) is my 1st cousin nine generations removed.  His grandparents were John Chipman (1620 - 1709) and Hope Howland (1629 - 1684) and also my 9th great grandparents.  Hope Howland was the daughter of Mayflower passengers John Howland and Elizabeth Tilley.    Rebecca Hale was the granddaughter of Rev. John Hale (1636 - 1700), who was an important figure in the 1692 Salem Witch hysteria. Rebecca and Rev. Chipman had fifteen children together.  He married second to Hannah Warren, daughter of Joseph Warren of Roxbury.

I hope I transcribed the Latin correctly!  The stone was very legible. Rev. John Chipman was a Harvard graduate and according to the compiled genealogy The Chipman Family:  A Genealogy of the Chipmans in America, 1631 - 1920 by Bert Lee Chipman, 1920 via Internet Archive, he was "ordained Dec. 28, 1715 as pastor of the First Church in the precinct of Salem and Beverly now North Beverly, Mass... In compliance with Mr. Chipman's request the church ordained Rev. Enos Hitchcock pastor associate May 1, 1771."  He served until his death on March 23, 1775.  

Huie tumulo mandantur reliquiæ
Reverendi et admodum venerabilis
Academiæ Harvardinæ alumni
Et fecundæ Ecclefiæ Beverlacenfis
Per annos quinquaginta novem et ultra
Paftoris fidelis
Vin mente folida et eruditione utili confpicui
Literarum facrarum peritia præcipue infignis
Verbum prædicando gravis et pungentis
Jefu religionis amore penetrati
Et præcepta ejus exemplo fuo alios docentis
Eccletiæ præfidendo vigilantis et integri
Toti gregi benevolentis et æqui
Bonos omnium fectarum ex animo complexi
Officiis mutuis focialibusq fungendo eximii
Domui fuæ omnis virtutis chriftianæ exemplaris
Profperis minime inflati
In adverfis patientifsimi
Qui longævitate faturatus
Firmifsima fpe beatæ immortalitatis
Animam effiavit
XXIII die Martii
Anno falutis humanæ MDCCLXXV
Ætatisq. fuæ LXXXV

There are some inscriptions in The Essex Antiquarian, Volume III, 1899 Pages 122 - 126.  Some of the stones transcribed in this journal article are not legible today. 

In the next few weeks I will feature more tombstones from this cemetery on "Tombstone Tuesday" here at my blog.  Stay tuned!


Heather Wilkinson Rojo, "Tombstone Tuesday ~ Old North Beverly Cemetery", Nutfield Genealogy, posted November 15, 2016, ( accessed [access date]).