Saturday, May 6, 2017

Surname Saturday ~ MASON of Salem, Massachusetts

Thomas MASON, my 8th great grandfather, was a fisherman who came to Salem in 1680 after selling land in Casco, Maine.  [York Deeds, Volume 14, page 33 ( Book XIV, folio 8)]  He was the pilot for a privateer Dragon in 1694, captained by Robert Glover, which captured a rich French ship St. Joseph at the mouth of the Canada River [the early name for the St. Lawrence River).  It was “Laden with Wine, Brandy and other Mechandizes” [from the Acts and Resolves, Public and Private, of the Province of the Massachusetts Bay, Volume VII (Resolves, etc. 1692 – 1702), page 55]  This prize was brought to Boston and valued at fifteen hundred pounds sterling.

About 1686 he married Christian Oliver, the daughter of Bridget (Playfer) Wasselbee Oliver Bishop, who would be hanged as a witch in Salem in 1692.  Their only daughter was Susannah Mason (1687 – 1769) my 7th great grandmother.   Christian died with a year of her mother’s death by execution, about 1693, and Thomas Mason remarried on 1 November 1693 to the widow Abigail (Curtice) Greenslade, the widow of Thomas Greenslade.  He was one of Ann Pudeator’s sons (Ann was hanged as a witch in 1692, too).  So Thomas Mason was married to two wives closely connected to witch trial victims. 

Edward Bishop, the husband of Bridget Bishop, was appointed guardian to his step granddaughter Susannah Mason.   When Thomas Oliver, Bridget’s second husband, died the court ordered 9 pounds from his estate to be given to Christian Oliver Mason, but she was already dead so the new administrator of the probate case left the money to Susannah.  On 12 April 1694 Edward Bishop was appointed the guardian of Susanna Mason and took control of the 9 pounds.  He bought a houselot for her at the intersection of Essex Street and Forrester Street.  This was her property when she married John Becket, Jr. in 1711.  The Beckets were shipbuilders, and their shipyard was nearby.

My MASON lineage:

Generation 1  Thomas Mason, born about 1665; married about 1686 in Salem to Christian Oliver, daughter of Thomas Oliver and Bridget Playfer.  She was born 8 May 1667 in Salem, and died about 1693.  One daughter.

Generation 2:  Susannah Mason, born 23 August 1687 in Salem, died after 1769; married on 20 September 1711 in Salem to John Becket, son of William Becket and Hannah Sibley. He was born in Salem on 10 August 1684 and died 1763.  Six children.

Generation 3: John Becket m. Rebecca Beadle
Generation 4:  Hannah Becket m. Joseph Cloutman
Generation 5:  Mary Cloutman m. Abijah Hitchings
Generation 6:  Abijah Hitchings m. Eliza Ann Treadwell
Generation 7:  Abijah Franklin Hitchings m. Hannah Eliza Lewis
Generation 8:  Arthur Treadwell Hitchings m. Florence Etta Hoogerzeil
Generation 9:  Gertrude Matilda Hitchings m. Stanley Elmer Allen (my grandparents)


Heather Wilkinson Rojo, “Surname Saturday ~  MASON of Salem, Massachusetts”, Nutfield Genealogy, posted May 6, 2017, ( accessed [access date]). 

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