Saturday, June 18, 2011

Line 8 John Putnam, Toil and Trouble

The zealousness of the Puritans can be greatly admired but even holy zealousness can turn to toil and trouble. The Putnams, faithful in their belief of God, were also drawn to the dark side of their religion and it was from the Putnam Family that one of the early colonial most troubling and dark bit of history was born and bred.

John Putnam baptized 17 January 1579/80 in Ashton Abbots, Buckingham, England the son of Nicholas Putnam and his wife Margaret Goodspeed
Married Prisiclla (possibly a Deacon)
Died 30 December 1662 in Salem, MA
John and Priscilla Putnam’s children were:
1.      Thomas Putnam born in Ashton Abbots, Buckingham, Englandmarried 1. Ann Holyoke and 2. Mary
2.      Elizabeth Putnam born 20 December 1612 Ashton Abbots, Buckingham, England
3.      John Putnam born 20 December 1612 Ashton Abbots, Buckingham, England, died young
4.      Nathaniel Putnam born 11 October 1619 Ashton Abbots, Buckingham, died 23 July 1700 Salem, Essex, MA married Elizabeth Hutchinson
5.      Sara Putnam born 07 March 1620/21 Ashton Abbots, Buckingham, England
6.      Phoebe Putnam born 28 July 1624 Ashton Abbots, Buckingham, England
7.      John Putnam born 27 May 1627 Ashton Abbots, Buckingham, England, died 07 April 1710 Salem, Essex, MA married Rebecca Prince

John Putnam, son of Nicholas Putnam and his wife Margaret Goodspeed, was born and grew up Ashton Abbots, Buckingham, England. Aston Abbots is a parish on the Hertforshire border when the Putnam family’s ancestor originated. After his father’s death, John took possession of Nicholas’ house and lands in Aston Abbotts. In 1614, his mother, Margaret Goodspeed Putnam married William Huxley. John’s name appears on the license as one of the sureties.

John married a woman named Priscilla. There is some indication that she was Priscilla Deacon from Corner Hill in Hamel Hempstead. By 1610 the first of their seven known children were born. Seventeen years later, John, their youngest child was born. By 1640, when the children were grown John, Priscilla and sons Thomas, Nathaniel and John and their families were in Salem, Massachusetts.

The sense of Christian brotherhood was not one of peace and compatibility in Salem Village and Salem Town. Almost from the start feuds and complaints jabs the peace of Salem Village. In retrospect, the line between accusers and “witches” was drawn up soon after the settling of the Village.

Salem records described John as husbandman and yeoman. He was well off and as educated as any many in the town. He did not join the church until 1647 but seems to have been busy with his farm and family duties. John and Priscilla’s three sons who came to Salem produced large families so that the name of Putnam was very promenade in Salem for many years. But, of course, their name would forever be connected to with the notorious witchcraft trail that would color Salem for years to come.

John died 30 December 1662 at what was then Salem Village but is now called Danvers. He was eighty. "He ate his supper, went to prayer with his family and died before he went to sleep." Many years later a stone was erected in the Wadsworth Cemetery in honor of John and his wife and his son Capt John Putnam and his wife Rebecca.

1. New England Marriages Prior to 1700 by Clarence Almon Torrey
2. "Genealogical Dictionary of the First Settlers of New England" by James Savage
3.  The Devil Discovered, Salem Witchcraft 1692 by Enders A. Robinson
4. Salem Vital Records, Vol. III, Deaths
5. Salem Vital Records, Vol. II, Marriages
6. Internet Derick Sibley Hartshorn
7. "History of the Putnam Family"
8. "England Ancestry of John Putnam of Salem, MA" by G. Andrews Moriarty Jr., The American Genealogist, Vol. 15, p. 8-15, 1938
9. Genealogical And Personal Memoirs Relating To The Families Of Boston And Eastern Massachusetts. Prepared Under The Editorial Supervision Of William Richard Cutter, A. M.
10. Find a Grave,
11. "Descendants of John Putnam" by Bill Putnam
12. "John Putnam" Familypedia,

My Putnam line:
Richard Puttenham born about 1350
John Puttenham
John Puttenham
Richard Puttenham married Joan ?
John Putnam died 1573; married Margerie ?
Nicholas Putnam married Margaret Goodspeed
John Putnam married Priscilla [Deacon?]
Thomas Putnam married Ann Holyoke
Deliverance Putnam married Jonathan Walcott
Anna Walcott married Joshua  Felt
Aaron Felt married Mary Waite
Aaron Felt married Tabitha  Upton
Abiatha  Felt married Jesse Anson Braman
Anson Amos Braman married Mary Marshall
Martha Ann (Matty) Braman married James Harvey Chubb
Otis T. Chubb married Caroline Belle Maltby

Friday, June 3, 2011

Line 7, Richard Ewen, Southern Purity

Before continuing onto the darker side of the Puritan movement, I would like to remark on my “Southern” roots. The colony called “Maryland” after the Princess Henrietta Maria, who married the ill-fated Charles I, was to become the home to colonists of many different Christian religious denominations. My family roots go back to many of the sects, including the Puritans, Richard Ewen and his family being the first of my Maryland Puritans.

Richard Ewen was born about 1605 in England.
Married Sophia Ewell
Died after 1665 in Anne Arundel Co., Maryland
1.   Elizabeth Ewen born 06 June 1630 West River, Anne Arundel, MD married Richard Talbott
2.   Richard Ewen died 12 January 1674/75 The Clifts, Calvert Co., MD
3.   John Ewen died 06 April 1664 Anne Arundel Co., Maryland
4.   Susanna Ewen married John Billingsley and died 09 February 1662/63 Anne Arundel Co.,
5.   Anne Ewen died 07 December 1663 Anne Arundel Co., Maryland
6.   Sophia Ewen died 09 February 1674/75 Anne Arundel Co., Maryland

While most Puritans followed Winthrop and his fleet to New England, a few brave souls ventured to Virginia and then Maryland to settle in the swamps and forests of a warmer climate. Richard Ewen and his family were among the Puritans who sought freedom to worship by coming to the New World. Why they went south instead of to the Puritan haven of Massachusetts is unknown. But there was opportunity in Maryland and Puritans were going “south” as well.

Richard Ewen was probably born in England. The family name also spelled Ewens, Owens, Owings. He married a young woman named Sophia, whose surname is in debate but Ewell seems to be the most common suggestion. A Richard Ewen was given 150 in Upper Norfolk Co., VA in the mid-1640s and it very well may have been my Richard Ewen.

The first Baron Baltimore visited what would become the colony of Maryland in 1628. He had converted to Roman Catholicism shortly before the death of King James I for whom he had been the principal secretary. James I’s son, Charles I, married the French princess who gave her name to Maryland. Their marriage was a loving and faithful marriage but in his love for Henrietta Maria, Charles converted to her Catholic faith much to the distain of the growing Puritan movement in England. In 1628, the Catholic Baron Baltimore visited what would become the colony of Maryland. On his return to England, he asked Charles I for a land grant in this area to settle persecuted English Roman Catholics so they could freely worship. This grant was given to Cecilius Calvert, son and heir of Baron Baltimore after the latter’s death in 1632. In 1634, Cecilius’ brother Leonard brought over colonists who were made up of Catholic gentry as well as Protestants. All seemed well in Maryland, except for William Claiborne, who lost Kent Island to the greedy Baltimore boys.
Meanwhile, back in England, the English Civil War began. Despite an ocean separating Maryland from England, the Civil War between the Royalists and Parliament had a direct influence on Maryland. The Catholic Lord of Maryland, of course, sided with the doomed Catholic King Charles. Leonard Calvert hurried home to England to consult with Cecilius leaving Giles Brent as acting governor. Captain Richard Ingle was arrested sometime later for his adamant and loud support of Parliament. He escaped and joined forces with William Claiborne, still bitter about losing Kent Island.
Leonard Calvert returned to Maryland as Claiborne and Ingle created the “Plundering Time” by causing trouble throughout the colony of Maryland. This finally ended in 1646 when Leonard Calvert returned from exile in Virginia. Leonard died the next year and William Stone was named governor of Maryland. While England had declared the Commonwealth, Virginia remained loyal to the King. This in turn led to persecution of the Puritans in that colony. Governor Stone allowed some of these Puritans to settle in Providence located at the present-day Annapolis, Maryland.
Richard, his wife Sophia, their five children and three servants were among the Virginia Puritans who settled in “Providence”. He received 1000 acres of land. Their nearest neighbors were Edward Lloyd (just opposite present day Annapolis), Richard Bennett and Richard Talbott, a Quaker, who married Ewen’s daughter, Elizabeth. But life in the New World was often full of unsettling experiences and the unrest between the Royalists and the Parliament continued to affect the peace between the Catholics and the Puritans in Maryland.

Captain Roger Heamans, by the power given to him by the Oliver Cromwell, Lord Protector of England, came to Maryland in 1655 and stripped Stone of his governorship. Stone didn’t take this very well. He challenged Heamans’ authority, taking records, rallying his troops, and relocating north of Providence where he plotted to attack the Puritan settlement of Providence. The short battle that followed became known as the Battle of the Severn. The Puritans in less then an hour took control and Stone and his troops were taken prisoner.

Richard Ewen was among those who sat on the council of war following the Battle of the Severn that condemned Governor Stone, along with other Royalist to death for their treason against the English Commonwealth. Only four Royalists were executed. Stone and Josias Fendall, who became governor in 1656 after Lord Baltimore regained control of Maryland, were allowed to live. Richard Ewen was among the Provincial Council who had arrested Fendall and sentenced him "to go to the place from whence he came a prisoner, and there abide in safe custody untilt his matters of government in the Province of Maryland be further settled by his Highness Lord protector." Fendall was allowed to take an oath to obey the present government. He later became governor of Maryland at which time, ironically, the very same Richard Ewen who tried him after the Battle of the Severn, was appointed Commissioner and Justice of the Peace and held his first court date on July 23, 1656. He joined the assembly the following year and later was a justice representing Anne Arundel County. Richard was a busy man, farming his land, serving in the house of Burgess, being sheriff of Anne Arundel County in 1664 and 1665 and as an officer of the militia for five years, as well as being a husband, father and faithful church attendee.

It is unknown when Richard died but it was probably sometime after 1665 when his name was last recorded. Maryland didn’t have the Puritan fascination with records and there were few records kept of births and deaths.

1. World Tree Project "Willis - Black"
2.  "Early Families of Southern Maryland, Vol 2" The Lawrence Family
1.   Anne Arundel Gentry, Vol 1; Burgess Family
5.  Battle of the Severn, Wikipedia,

My Ewen line:
Richard Ewen married Sophia Ewell
Elizabeth Ewen married Richard Talbott
Elizabeth Talbott married Benjamin Lawrence
Elizabeth Lawrence married John Gassaway
Nicholas Gassaway married Elizabeth Hawkins
Elizabeth Gassaway married Charles Sellman
Margaret Sellman married Joshua Hobbs
Anne “Nancy” Hobbs married George Burkheart
Polly Burkheart married William Hopkins
Cynthia Hopkins married Samuel Thomas Miller
Eliza Miller married Josiah Maltby
Caroline Bell Maltby married Otis T. Chubb