Saturday, December 31, 2011

Posts of interest - 2011

Did a summary of summaries in December 2019. Started metrics a little later: the metrical.  


As a means (an attempt) to freeze a point in time (which we know is not possible), the last post of 2011 will list the top four posts in terms of having been read (well, views, anyway). Perhaps, this will be a yearly event.

Aside: As said in Mission and Method, posts are to contribute to a theme, though there may be divergent ones from time to time. Blogs allow categories, but these are problematic since they collect and present in a time order. From time to time, there ought to be a super-post that gives a more coherent view (here is an example - Truth, Fiction, and Finance). Perhaps, that type of thing will be done more often in the coming year.

Of course, I would be derelict if I didn't opine on why the interest.

Posts of interest, as of today:
  • -- Gardners and Gardners -- what's in a name? I have found off-spring for a lot of those on Dr. Frank A's list. Some writers have suggested relationships between these Gardners. Of course, there are some not in the book (they now appear in internet searches -- what would Dr. Frank A. think of the new resources?). One of our goals is to look further at these types of things. It cannot be done without going back across the water. Following paperwork can be problematic, as the genealogists know. Conjectures are nice, if supported; in fact, we'll have an example of that shortly in regard to Thomas and Margaret. There are too many gaps, in many cases. We can't just fill these in without some thoughtful reason. Some families have on-going research that is supported by DNA analysis. One that I found to be interesting is the Gordon family's work. 
  • Historical genealogy -- it is interesting that a very recent, and popular, series of books (at least, one of these was filmed) by a Santa Fe writer was based upon the War of the Roses. However, the tales were fantasized such as to appeal to the modern mind. Actually, just re-looking with a new eye ought to be very informative. That is one of our goals.
  • Welcome -- being a new blog, this post would still pop up. At some point, hopefully, another thread will supersede. Any predictions? 
  • Two generations -- we use nine children, as did the Great Migration study (six pages on Thomas). Some have added others. We will include all of the grand-children here, at least in a list, this coming year. We, inadvertently, had one featured this year: Ruth Gardner. That was due to my happening upon Frances Hill's book.  
Recaps: 2018, 2017 (missing), 20162015201420132012, 2011.

Remarks: Modified: 07/30/2021

12/29/2012 --  Summary - 2012.

02/26/2013 --  See Wikipedia for a discussion about William Gardner whose page has been deleted.

12/15/2018 -- Added in links to recaps from the beginning.

12/29/2018 -- This post is the 2nd most read of all time, after the post on the marriage of Thomas and Margaret.

01/12/2019 -- To support an indexing by thumbnails, we needed an image. This post was multi-themed, so none stood out. However, motivations are always on the table as is the 'whence' issue. The image is from a post in 2013, however this post is still on the most-read list and is a good marker for us in continuing our work. The post: Origins - motivations. We started this blog from a blank state; we found out in our research that Thomas is a hard nut to crack. He was here, left progeny, but never left us his writing (beyond a signature). But, he was supportive of Conant when he arrived, Endicott when he arrived, Winthrop when he arrived. But, Thomas could only endure one session of the General Court. That is a story to look further into (we will). Later, changed to the image of Archbishop Gardiner.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Gardner-Pingree house (and murder)

This house is just east of the Essex Institute; actually, it is now part of the Peabody Essex Museum. Some of the features of the house, with a very nice description, can be seen at an arts blog: Part 1, Part 2.

In a brochure for the Hawthorne in Salem walking tour, the house is mentioned as the site of a crime whose trial caught the attention of Nathaniel (Thomas descendant) and everyone else in the area. Capt Joseph White was found murdered in the house in April, 1830. It turned out that the crime had been committed by a member of a prominent family; two brothers from another well-known family were involved in the planning. The prosecution was handled by Daniel Webster who, despite difficulty related to the case, got the jury to convict. The perpetrator had killed himself before the trial; the other two were hung after their conviction.


The Salem brochure says that this house was built in 1804. Then, it says that Joseph White bought it in 1814. Elsewhere, we see that John (descendant through sons, Samuel and George) and Sarah (West) Gardner were the builders. Too, we see that John bought the land from his father.

Then, we learn that the Gardners sold the house in 1811 because of financial difficulties. Which were?

Essentially, it turns out that these were due to losses incurred during events that led up to the War of 1812. John and his father lost several ships to the British. They didn't go broke; but John and Sarah had to sell this magnificent house. We will look at the details later, but John is covered as #162 (his father is #110) in Dr. Frank A.'s book.

Now, we learn further that John sold the house to Nathaniel West who was related to his wife. As well, they lived in the house until 1814, so they did get a chance to enjoy their effort in getting it put together. Then, when the house was sold to Joseph White, they moved.


John and his father owned land in several areas of Essex county. There were other Gardner owners, too. It might be interesting to pull these together. The Dr. Frank A. book might be a start as he did a thorough review of records.


Too, the interplay of families will be a subject worth pursuing. For instance, in this case, the two brothers were of the Knapp family. The perpetrator was a Crowninshield. How do the Knapps relate to Samuel?


Recently, the Smithsonian published an article about the trial.


01/07/2020 -- While looking for information on Joseph Gardner and Ann Downing, I found a reference that seems to conflate the two ladies: The murder that led to the murder of two Presidents. Need to look into that further. See Gardner's gate.

12/25/2019 -- Found out about the Lost New England blog, today (Gardner-Pingree House).

06/19/2019 -- Remembering pending research such as this one. Left comment at Streets of Salem: The Most Beautiful House in America (and the Power of the Place)

10/10/2018 -- This house was on land owned by Thomas. We are looking at where he was and where he is now.

07/11/2012 -- A recent issue of Gardner's Beacon looks at the War of 1812.

01/05/2012 -- John Sr was first cousin of John Gardner who was the grandfather of John Lowell Gardner, I.

12/31/2011 -- Kudos to Louise DuPont Crowninshield for her preservation efforts. Too, we have her to thank for the gardens.

12/31/2011 -- David Pingree bought the house from Nathaniel West (brother of Sarah) in 1834. The house was donated to the Essex Institute in 1933.

12/30/2011 --  The Pingree family preserved the house and donated it to the Essex Institute. 

Modified: 01/07/2020

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Remembering Thomas

Today, we pause to reflect on the legacy of Thomas Gardner of Salem. Thomas, as an old planter, moved his family in 1626 from Cape Ann and helped to settle the area which is known today as Salem.

Thomas died on December 29, 1674 and was buried on Old Gardner hill in Salem. Some of the graves in that area were moved to the Harmony Grove Cemetery in the 1840s to allow re-routing of streets in Salem.


03/18/2021 -- After some research, there is a new view of the status of grave at Old Gardner Hill. Details gathered via research are reviewed in this post: 29 December 1764. We do not know the status of Thomas' grave (or any of the others, as, essentially, stones were move). However, Essex County has many more examples of the type of cemetery destruction that we saw in Salem. 

12/31/2016 -- Two days late. Lots to report: looking at Cape Ann; The Gardner Annals; Sherborne, Dorset; NEHGRAll things Gardner; ...

12/24/2012 -- Thomas, unlike Conant, was not overshadowed in the world of being. We'll spend some time characterizing this fact and what it means to reasonable folks.

05/01/2012 -- Backbone, in particular, this overview. Two things to be thankful for: Rev Hubbard's look back (his brief mention is sufficient) and the fact that the manuscript was not lost (otherwise, would Thomas had been even more unknown?).

Modified: 03/18/2021

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Gardner's Beacon, Vol. I, No. 5

Christmas has become an integral part of our modern society, though there are continuing efforts to lose some of its characteristics related to Christ. So, let us offer you "season's greeting" on this day. Tudor society did celebrate Christmas, as probably did Thomas' and Margaret's families. And, there were things related to the season that had old northern heritage.

So, what was Christmas, in New England, like at that time? We know that some effort may have already been exerted to remove the more 'pagan' influences. In fact, some may have wanted to ignore the season altogether due to difficulties in establishing Christ's actual birth date. Others wanted more spiritual modes to be followed.

The Christmas season helps start off the winter months during which there can be issues resulting from the cold. Those early pioneers had to actually show that the English could survive in that environment. And, many did demonstrate this.

See Vol. I, No. 5 of Gardner's Beacon for our perspective on those times and trials. Too, we take a moment to list some of Thomas' granddaughters, such as Mary (Gardner) Coffin.  

Expect that there will be a continuing threads on this, and related, topics.

References: Lambert, Tim  A World History Encyclopedia (Tudor Christmas); Wikipedia, Christmas; Nantucket Town  Nantucket Insurrection


12/19/2011 -- Added source listing from this page (scroll down). Will do this for all issues. 

Modified: 04/23/2012

Friday, December 2, 2011

Backbone and more

These posts, of which this is the first to tie in the category, will be collected into a separate group. What will be the content? An outsider's assessment of those early years and Thomas' legacy from such. 'outsider' means in-law, basically.


Backbone has already been used with a different context: fedaerated. Why? The study of those times that were 150 years prior to the Revolution are very much apropos to understanding of the current problems. Even Naisbitt thinks so, though I don't agree with his slant.


Disclosure: The author is a 3rd generation American whose ancestors were basically post the Civil war. Hence, looking at Thomas and Margaret affords a new view into the history of northern Europe and the new world. As an aside, there has been a lot written about the past 400 years, even about that New England locale. Hence, one can easily get lost in all of the verbiage. And, there are conflicts in what was written. So, we seriously need some new overviews that try to help guide one through the mess (more below).


So, today, while I was reading the Annals of Salem (the overview) by Felt, I had some thoughts that will be expanded upon further. First of all, there were tyrannical doings almost from the beginnings. True, the aboriginal peoples were trampled. But, there was serious infighting among the settlers, even though they were from a common background.

Earlier, I had noted to myself that Thomas seemed to be above the fray (we'll expand upon this thoroughly). However, let me say that he was there, and of notice, even without corroboration of those writing the historical accounts (meaning, of course, that we can thank Rev. Hubbard (he died in 1704) for the first real reference -- it is said that he had talked to all of the principals -- Thomas, Roger, and John). In other words, Thomas, and Margaret, had been successful in bringing up their kids in the midst of turmoil and peril (we'll characterize this, to boot). Of course, many other families were equally adept. For this, we can be grateful.


It is of definite interest that the first year that Thomas deigned to undergo the 'freeman' yoke (1637), he was elected, with William Hathorne (Samuel's father-in-law), to be Deputy to the General Court. We'll go more into that later.

Some have wondered about what happened to Thomas after the group left Cape Ann because he's not in the record (see Remarks 12/03/2011). One author (Paine family) considered that the family might have gone back to England. As we know, some did. Rev. Lyford went to Virginia.

Think of it, though, that Thomas was the ultimate example of a self-sufficient, mature person. In other words, he was an archetypal New England'r before it had even become popular to think of those good traits. He was able to guide himself and his family through those dark times (and, we'll be getting into this in depth). When it became apparent that he had to conform to the powers that be in a public sense for the sake of his children, he did so. Then, his kids all excelled. Joseph stands out in that he married the sister of Sir Downing (there are several messages there). Samuel's wife had in-laws (the Corwins) who have royal descent. Richard and John did very well on Nantucket. George has his memorial (kidding). The girls have their esteemed offspring, too.


Of course, this brings up things related to the background. How did Thomas get his position from Rev White? And then, how could Rev White forget him so soon? When Conant came on the scene, Thomas showed a lot of maturity even though Conant is more touted for his acceptance of Endicott when he stormed on the set.


By the way, we'll go into some of the other parties who have their names blasted upon the pages of history. From where I sit (and that does mean that you can infer personal knowledge), some of these people were not much better than were their Christian brothers who sustained the energy behind the Inquisition for so long. What were the English doing? Trying to show up the Spaniards? Yes, a few things might be discussed along that line.

From what I've seen, Thomas has no recorded peccadilloes of this nature. In fact, given that the American Indians on Nantucket really liked John, we can assume something about John's upbringing.


Now, another thing that came up today was seeing a reference (in Felt's work) to the Magna Charta at a 1635 meeting (finally, I thought -- hey, that's 11 years later -- same issues as we face now with our leaders, don't you think?). Whoever brought that up may have had to duck (I'll research this more). But, it was wonderful to see the reference. In case it has not been noted, we're coming up on the 800th anniversary (2015) of this very important document.

Yes, it was brought up, in the meeting, that by-the-seats-of-the-pants governance, by second-rate people, was not conducive to a sustainable society, more or less. But, the U.S. did emerge, eventually.

Too, those with the real sense, such as Williams and Bachiler, went off to found Rhode Island and New Hampshire, respectively.


What? Did I read that Cromwell almost came over? It seems that the king prevented this, to his dismay a little later. That little bit sort of indicates that we must not forget some of the motives for coming over here (not just freedom, religious or otherwise). England was a mess, in many ways. So, would not New England exhibit that messiness, too?


There is a lot to read. So, at some point, a bibliography related to the 'backbone' theme will be presented. These posts will be like notes with a theme, hopefully.


07/12/2015 -- Of course, when Roger brought his people to Salem, Thomas was not there. Why? He and Margaret kept the Cape Ann house. Of course, when John Endicott came over, he saw Mr. Gardner in his nice house. John said, that is mine. Take it over to Salem. So, by splitting his time (Salem is not that far), Thomas had an idyllic time with his wife and kids; too, he had time to get himself and his family settled in the new realm.

04/20/2015 -- Yes, Cape Ann's life was idyllic, except any cohesive group must always endure the changes brought by new arrivals. Thomas and Margaret got to enjoy their house, once again, after Conant and crew left and Endicott saw the house and wanted it moved.

07/17/2014 -- The book about the Invisibles (the unsung heroes) offers another viewpoint. Of course, it is set in the modern context. But, we all know that history covers only a fraction of reality. What we see now is that technology will allow us suitable ways to go back and fill in the blank slates.

11/06/2013 -- While working on the next Beacon issue, I ran across some books. The one by Staloff was timely; imagine, I was wondering why the backbone series? Has the talented set ever allowed the lessors to have some semblance of a good life? Oh, you say yes? Winthrop, et al, were against this from the beginning. The stalwart of what could be (or could have been)? Thomas Gardner, of course.

11/27/2012 -- Let's itemize what we know, re-iterate some basics, and the proceed constructively.

05/01/2012 -- Two things to be thankful for: Rev Hubbard's look back (his brief mention is sufficient) and the fact that the manuscript was not lost (otherwise, would Thomas had been even more unknown?).

03/07/2012 -- Where was Thomas? 1626 or so and 1641 or so.

12/03/2011 -- The thing that grates? Thomas led the group into Cape Ann. When the group went to Naumkeag, Gardner is not on the list of planters. We see Conant, Balch, Woodbury, and Palfrey (each got 1K acres -- as well, all of the families have inter-married with the Gardners). When I say 'grate' I'm referring to my initial reaction a couple of years ago when I first started to read about this stuff. Gardner forgotten, ignored, shunned, what? And, Rev White was the instigator of that division. Well, it'll bear more scrutiny, no doubt.

Modified: 04/23/2021

Mary (Gardner) Coffin

This post has some information about one of the Nantucket Gardners. Earlier, we took a brief look at the Whaling Gardners. We will have to gather more information about John and Richard who were sons of Thomas and Margaret.


Mary was the daughter of John Gardner who had moved to Nantucket at the offer of some land. She was born in Salem in 1670. The Nantucket Historical Association has a painting of Mary (see Search Collections) that was done in 1717 by the Pollard Limner (see Timeline).

In 1686, Mary married Jethro Coffin (example descendants list). Also, their house is the 'oldest house' on Nantucket.


There is a painting at the NHA that shows Mary, as a young woman, running from an Indian. It will be interesting to find the story behind this painting.


01/07/2020 -- While looking for information on Joseph Gardner (brother of John) and Ann Downing, I found a reference to Thomas. It was written a year ago - The Gardners: Cape Ann planters that they were called. Also, there was some information on the Coffin family. In particular, there is a post about Mary (Coffin) Starbuck with the photo (above) of Mary (Gardner) Coffin. NHA and the National Gallery of Portraits say that the painting of of Mary Gardner. Looks like a task for Gardner Research to look into. See Gardner's gate.

04/20/2015 -- John helped map the Merrimack, as a young man. ... Mary in Eliza's database.

06/02/2012 -- Search results expired so brought in the image.

03/28/2012 -- Mark E. Miner's site has an interesting look at the Coffin/Gardner conflict that was related to full, versus half, ownership.

12/18/2011 -- Cotton Mather described John Gardner as being well acquainted with the Indians. Nantucket Town provides an interesting story about the Coffin and Gardner families and about the feud that went on between the family heads. The marriage of Mary and Jethro helped to settle, it is said, the controversies (as did the demise of the older guys). Her uncle, Richard, is said to have been of considerable education. John and Richard were both Magistrates, several times. Too, they performed many roles within the community.

12/18/2011 -- Added snapshot of the page with Mary's portrait. The site has over 600 images related to the Gardner family, including historical photos. 

Modified: 01/07/2020

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Future scholars

It is good to see ye olde times being studied by students whose time will be in the 21st century.

The Peabody's Puritan Planters reports that 100 students at the Higgins Middle School were to write on "one of four planters" (peabody.patch[.]com  / announcements / peabodys - puritan - planters#photo - 8508970) who were early in the area, namely John Endicott, Thomas Gardner, William Trask, and John Humphrey. The report shows part of an early map of the area.

Peabody Public Schools has a curriculum oriented to the history of the area which was part of the Salem Village and then of Danvers until 1855. The site has a nice collection of material that can be used for ready reference, including pointers to the Winthrop Society's effort at naming all of the early settlers and building a database entry on each.


01/03/2013 -- The curriculum pointer is gone, changed to point to the school district's site.

03/28/2014 -- See Vol. IV, No. 1 for a discussion of the movement from Cape Ann to Salem.

08/11/2020 -- While looking at some geological issues related to the continental U.S., we saw a 4th-grade lesson (this time, Georgia). Too, the topic bears more attention, so we provided a few links. Also, in this post, pulled out the stale pointer.  

Modified: 08/11/2020

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Salem's madness

Actually, it was the whole area that got engulfed in the mania. However, given that England perfected the quartering procedure, what else would one expect for New England?

One could ask a whole bunch of questions: trait of the people? Christian mania? diversionary technique developed by the best-and-brightest (of the times)? ...


The Miner Descent blog recently posted on this theme. The post tries to identify who, in the blogger's tree, might have been involved with the Witch Trials and what was the role of the person.


This blog looked at the phenomenon a little in a special issue of Gardner's Beacon. The theme will come forward, again, at some point.

English spirit?

10/17/2018 -- School study link is gone (site still there; page is now restricted to students only - time for 'waybacking').

04/07/2015 -- We have more questions than answers (research raises both).

05/17/2013 -- Imagine a (an extended) family meeting. Indeed. By the way, in terms of gene/meme influences, see the painting of Isabella and Mortimer at poor Hugh's ordeal.

04/30/2012 -- References to the news letter ought to be Gardner's Beacon

03/03/2012 -- Nice little school project (7M hits, not bad - Note: 10/17/2018 - link is gone - was a nice little study). 

12/17/2011 -- Tim Lambert's A World History Encyclopedia will be used much in this blog and in related material. Here is his take on the Salem turmoils

Modified: 10/17/2018

Friday, October 21, 2011

Gardner's Beacon, Vol. I, No. 4

Popular culture likes to equate Salem with witches, especially this time of the year. The events behind the stories are about the lives of real people. Some of them met tragic endings.

See Vol. I, No. 4 of Gardner's Beacon for one perspective on the phenomenon.

Expect that there will be a continuing threads on this, and related, topics.


12/15/2018 -- Added image to, our new site. Also, will be reorganizing the witch-related information. Today, found another 'accused witch' in Dr. Frank's tree.

09/19/2018 -- Pulling together the posts related to the witch trials for future discussion.

09/04/2013 -- Again, the scene is built as follows. Those who came over are from the 10th to 13th generations back (for the most part) for someone alive now. By the time of 1692, lots of the earlier arrivals had passed on. So, that left the second generation (again, for the most part) as the elders. Now, taking a cohort mix (generational cut) round or about 1692 would give us someone on the current person's tree who would have about three generations living (including the level of their own cohorts). So, we would see siblings/cousins, parents/aunts/uncles, and the greats. In other words, it's a composite person that is built from that cohort mix (meaning, of course, that being on the tree implies ancestry) for which we can identify relationships blood (including 1/2 blood), in-law, and even friends. What Marjorie's chart does is to take someone who is in the mix and look at extended relationships. Now, consider what we would have if we did that for a large part of the composite mix. Would it not be an interesting view?

02/10/2013 -- Fan-in from the turmoil of all types of ancestors.

10/29/2012 -- See Afterthoughts & Modifications.

10/28/2012 -- 1692, again. Errata (for Vol. I., No. 4 -- will add a method to add corrections at the Newsletter site): where it says sons of Giles, it ought to be sons-in-law (he saved his daughters' property from the State).

03/03/2012 -- Nice little school project (7M hits, not bad).

12/29/2011 -- This Beacon does not get into the subject, but here is an article that does. We'll be getting back to the history and the sociology and all of that, at some point. Much to read, first. 

12/19/2011 -- Added source listing from this page (scroll down). Will do this for all issues. 

12/17/2011 -- Reformat right column, 2nd page, to allow missing text to be seen: Whatever turns out to be the factors, can we take comfort that the Gardners, and friends, remained sane during the period?

12/17/2011 -- Tim Lambert's A World History Encyclopedia will be used much in this blog and in related material. Here is his take on the Salem turmoils

11/19/2011 -- Much is left to be said.

10/22/2011 -- The Beacon issue looks at a few of those who can be related closely with Thomas' kids and grand-kids. However, the whole mania would not have happened without the support of those who were in leadership roles. On the spiritual side, Cotton Mather can be shown to have meddled, such as in ensuring that Susannah Martin was hung. So, we can look at Cotton (et al) in depth. By the way, Susannah was a widow, as was Mary Parker. One motive was to strip widows of property, it seems. At least, Mary's kids were able to set some things right when they grew up.

On the political side, the Crown was involved. William Stoughton, for one, tried his best to be a Cromwell, do you not think? See Frances Hill on William. In regard to whether Samuel Gardner, or John Corwin who was the brother of Jonathan, could have any moderating influence, the approval (even if implicit) of those in power would have been difficult to overcome (as we all know, if it stinks at the top, so too does it trickle down -- or, does OWS show something otherwise?).

Modified: 12/15/2018

Thursday, October 13, 2011

The pond

Some see it as the pond. Earlier, it required a long trek over water with a lot of unknowns. It? Yes, the big ocean over which came the great bunch of migrate'rs who became the basis for U.S. of A.

Now, we are dealing, here, with genealogy. One adage is this: we handle things over here, and let those over there handle their part. That is, or as in, don't conjecture without a proper foundation upon what went on over there before the immigrant showed up here.

Some families have made the link twixt here and there. Kudos to them. Many others have not.

Our intent has always been to work on the bridging. How (the operative question)? Well, visits will be in order, at some point. For this post, let's start a list of resources.
  • The 1923/24 crew (and Margaret's house) was sponsored by the Dorchester Company. Recently, I ran across this list of the funders. These were the bosses of Thomas and John and the others. So we ought to get to know them. Many, of them, turn up in various family trees, anyway, so they'll get attention. The John White page mentions his siblings. The list for Elizabeth's children does not mention Thomas. That needs to be looked at. As well, how was Thomas introduced into the Company's rolls (and roles - see the Aside)?
  • The Dorset Parish Clerks pages provide information that comes from a lot of work by a lot of people. How many others, of this type of site, are there for us to use? It was said that John mentioned Sherborne as a place of origin for Thomas. This site might be a place to start to look at that issue.
  • A U.K. site relates to the work of one researcher; the organization is superb. Really like the display by counties in the New England states. Use this site a lot for reading about collateral families.
  • ...

04/26/2012 -- Last month, I was reading about Alan Turing and the 100th celebration. Sherborne School was mentioned. One thing to do is check whether, or not, they have records back to the early 1600s. I know that they can identify the headmaster from that period. As well, what other schools are in the area?

Modified: 04/30/2012

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Ruth Gardner

While reading a 2004 book (Such men are dangerous: the fanatics of 1692 and 2004), by Frances Hill, I saw this: John Hathorne married, at the age of 33, a girl of 14. Ironically, she was the daughter of Quakers who had been so mercilessly persecuted in Massachusetts they had moved to Connecticut. ... Probably Hathorne's domineering personality made only a very young girl, whose confidence had been undermined by her parents' persecution and her own subsequent abandonment, the kind of consort he could tolerate.


Strong words. There are several points in the book to discuss, but who was this 'very young girl' who married John Hathorne? We have already looked a little at one of John's descendant who was a descendant of Thomas, namely Nathaniel Hawthorne (The early times, Family traditions).

We had noted that John Hawthorne had married Ruth Gardner, daughter of George. Is that true? Also, was George hounded into going to Connecticut?

Nathaniel Hawthorne,
descendant of
Ruth Gardner
Ruth (#28 in Dr. Frank A.'s book) did marry Hathorne around 1674 when she was fairly young. Was she still alive during the madness of the early 1690s?

Now, George, her father, did go to Hartford around 1670. Dr. Frank A. doesn't have a motivation in his 1907 book. The Gardner Memorial might have some more information.

Did George leave little Ruth behind? What is the story here?


Frances Hill has studied, and written about, the Salem trials in which John had a very major part. His buddy, Jonathan Corwin, figures into the Thomas Gardner picture, to boot, as Samuel Gardner, son of Thomas, was married to their 1/2 sister (their mother was Samuel's mother-in-law, who had remarried after her husband, John White, died).

The madness was after Thomas' death. However, most of his kids went through those times. Hence, expect more about the topic in this blog as it is one of the many examples of then vs now and how we still haven't learnt some necessary lessons.


John Hathorne's sisters married Porters who tried to protect people, such as Rebecca Nurse. All types of stories have been told about the ordeals, and there is a lot of public interest.

One of our interests is to collect the stories that tie to Thomas' family; they ought to be a very interesting, eclectic mix.


We'll have to feature the other figures in Frances' book, such as Cotton Mather: And, running off after abstracted chimeras as we have seen the past decade, or so, is not effective for the commonweal. Perhaps, someone in Harvard has already figured this out. Do I see shades of Cotton Mather here (kidding, of course)?

Remarks: Modified: 09/19/2018

10/19/2011 -- Need to mention Jonathan's son, George, as seen from the Corey side: The only person who seemed to profit from the witchcraft hysteria was Sheriff George Corwin who confiscated property and pocketed fees collected from the accused and their relatives.

10/19/2011 -- One motivation for interest is that these Corwin guys are great-1/2-uncles (however it is written). Hathorne, on the other hand, is a full great-uncle.

12/02/2011 -- More in the 4th issue of Gardner's Beacon.

12/29/2011 -- This post does not get into the subject, but here is an article that does. We'll be getting back to the history and the sociology and all of that, at some point. Much to read, first.

02/10/2013 -- Fan-in from the turmoil of all types of ancestors.

03/13/2013 -- In regard to the connection with the Corwins, Samuel Gardner was 1/2 brother-in-law of Jonathan Corwin. George Corwin, Sr, was married to Samuel's mother-in-law, Elizabeth Herbert White.

09/04/2013 -- Again, the scene is built as follows. Those who came over are from the 10th to 13th generations back (for the most part) for someone alive now. By the time of 1692, lots of the earlier arrivals had passed on. So, that left the second generation (again, for the most part) as the elders. Now, taking a cohort mix (generational cut) round or about 1692 would give us someone on the current person's tree who would have about three generations living (including the level of their own cohorts). So, we would see siblings/cousins, parents/aunts/uncles, and the greats. In other words, it's a composite person that is built from that cohort mix (meaning, of course, that being on the tree implies ancestry) for which we can identify relationships blood (including 1/2 blood), in-law, and even friends. What Marjorie's chart does is to take someone who is in the mix and look at extended relationships. Now, consider what we would have if we did that for a large part of the composite mix. Would it not be an interesting view?

10/30/2013 -- I am in the process of reading Katherine Howe's book, The Physick Book of Deliverance Dane. Dane, as in being related to Francis, of course. I wondered if there would be motivating ideas for a Beacon issue (we did have 1692 as a theme in 2011 and 2012 - we'll pick up the theme in a time other than Halloween). Katherine's book has an interesting plot, especially the balancing of the characters, and their interactions, in two time periods is nice. The description that Katherine provides of little Dorcas Good in the underground cell surely depicts the poor, young thing's misery and shows Katherine's grasp of the horror. One wonders, from some of the modern views and comments, if people really understand the dire situation. Too, the main hypothesis might have some truth, in a slightly altered sense. You see, science has not shown as much light on human matters as some might think. But, then, for any knowledge that our western mind has gained, we have also seen that the set of the unknowns does not diminish (more than mere choice). Is it just that we get better able to cover (as in, remove from awareness) the holes in which lurk the demons (until they come back and bite us at inopportune times)? ... And, Ruth? Her tale needs to be brought forth. We will have to look into that. For instance, what did Nathaniel write of his g-grand-mother?

10/30/2013 -- Being of the third generation, Ruth ought to be given some attention with the upcoming 400th events. The early time, and its people, set the stage for the later.

11/13/2013 --  Phippen would be part of the slate fill.

05/01/2014 -- Put a caption on Nathaniel's photo. Of course, John Hathorne was of a pre-photo time, but it is better to have the caption. ... This post has been popular.  

11/10/2015 -- Ran across this site: Interesting work, very detailed. Put in a comment about John and Ruth and their kids. Dr. Frank is a descendant of John's sister, Elizabeth, who with her husband, Israel Porter, was a supporter of Rebecca Nurse. Ruth was daughter of George.

06/30/2016 -- "daughter Hathorne" is mentioned in George's will, as quoted by Dr. Frank in his 1933 book, pg 41. 

09/19/2018 -- Pulling together the posts related to the witch trials for future discussion.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Gardner's Beacon, Vol. I, No. 3

Some of the early arrivals, such as Higginson, wrote about their experiences. Then, there were the later lookbacks by others, like Conant.

The first researcher who wrote about the early times of Massachusetts was Rev. William Hubbard. And, he mentioned both Thomas Gardner and John Tylly. Was he the first? The Reverend wrote in the late 1600s. Luckily, the only copy of his work was saved by those who knew how.

Later, there were other lookbacks, such as Felt's who went through the records of towns, such as Salem and Ipswich and others.

Then, with the advent of organized work on records about mid-1800s, families started to put together their stories. We have the works of Frank A. Gardner, MD in this category. As well, there was a flurry of activity around the 300th anniversary of the Cape Ann venture.

Now, we're almost 400 years out. It's time for another go-around. See Vol. I, No. 3 of Gardner's Beacon for our view of Margaret's perspective.

Expect that there will be a continuing threads on this, and related, topics.


12/17/2011 -- Tim Lambert's A World History Encyclopedia will be used much in this blog and in related material. Here is his take on the life in the colonial times

06/04/2019 -- Added image and put this on our image list at the portal to truth

Modified: 06/04/2019

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Miriam (Gardner) Hill

Thomas and Margaret had three daughters. We have detailed some information on Sarah, the oldest daughter. The next two daughters were Miriam and Seeth.

Miriam married, around 1657, John Hill of Salem. Whereas Miriam was born in New England, John was from Bristol, England.

Miriam and John had two daughters.
There is another Miriam Gardner who was the niece of this Mariam and was the daughter Miriam's brother, Richard Gardner. This Miriam Gardner married John Worth of Nantucket.


Children (according to the NEHGS and the Great Migration Project - as represented by WikiTree): ThomasGeorgeRichardJohnSarahSamuelJosephMiriamSeeth.

Remarks: Modified: 07/29/2022

11/27/2019 -- Removed stale pointers. We are working the 2nd generation through the 5th generation. John Hill remarried when Miriam died and had children. Also, added in Miriam's niece, Mariam (Gardner) Worth.

12/13/2020 -- Added link to list of descendants. 

07/29/2022 -- Added WikiTree link for William Haskell, spouse of Miriam Hill. Today, showed that Wally (Tony Lee Dow) is a descendant of Susannah Hill as is Charles Henry Dow. Added link to the Haskell database record for William Haskell and Miriam Hill. Dudley Chase Haskell (found of the Haskell Indian institute in Lawrence KS is a descendant). 

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

True gentleman

About a hundred years ago, there was an effort to recognize a 'forgotten' man who had been overlooked since he was overshadowed by the 'gentlemen' of the times. Ah, to whom does that refer?

Well, it could apply to many, as 'forgotten' is probably more apropos in the contexts being discussed here than not. Only a few rise to the level of general awareness. By doing so, are they of a better sort? Ah, philosophy coming to fore here?

Now, if we limit the context to the Cape Ann venture, Dorchester Company, we could think of many. In fact, only a few of the 'old planters' have been looked at. John Tylly is still a mystery, as we see from the 'Great Migration' effort of late. The fact is that he was a 'lead' in the effort, for a year, and then cast'd aside. Getting that position has some implications that bear study; the subsequent times still need a good look or two.

And, we'll be doing that.

But, there was one gentleman who got recognized a hundred years ago. He has a statue in Salem, plaques in various places (like Gloucester), and the story of this ancestry filled in.

There is another who is still under the radar who is the subject of this blog. Thomas. I have been pondering what would be the proper way to address what Thomas' life means. 'backbone' of the economy came to mind. 'forerunner' is another, as one hundred and fifty years after his time, we had the major shift, that was permanent, called the American Revolution.

Yes, both Thomas and Margaret were ahead of their time having to bear the shackles of the theocracy so desired by some of those who flitted across the skies.

But, what exactly are gentlemen? We can look at various classes of men or perhaps just realize that these pertain to role. Yet, are not effective actions within a role associated back toward the individual's characters?

This is a brief introduction, as we'll go into this more. The gentleman is not by necessity aristocratic. That is mere pretension, even if it is followed by the sword. Nor, ought the property rest solely on those of the military elite. For now, there is an efficacy that comes from this; however, one has to think that somehow the masses of those who really serve (mostly of the enlisted variety) need recognition, to boot. How about adequate pay, for starter?

Nor ought the property relate to the clergy. Oh no. Thankfully, we had the likes of Reverends Stephen Bachiler and John Wise countering that theocratic trend. Yes, we must not forget Anne Hutchinson and many others.


Therefore, we need to, after 400 years, find some way to honor Thomas and his contributions. This blog can be considered a start.


11/06/2013 -- While working on the next Beacon issue, I ran across some books. The one by Staloff was timely; imagine, I was wondering why the backbone series? Has the talented set ever allowed the lessors to have some semblance of a good life? Oh, you say yes? Winthrop, et al, were against this from the beginning. The stalwart of what could be (or could have been)? Thomas Gardner, of course.

12/24/2012 -- Thomas, unlike Conant, was not overshadowed in the world of being. We'll spend some time characterizing this fact and what it means to reasonable folks.

11/27/2012 -- Let's itemize what we know, re-iterate some basics, and the proceed constructively.

09/13/2012 -- About Margaret. We'll honor her as the ancestor, with Thomas, of the Gardner family.

05/01/2012 -- Backbone, in particular, this overview. Two things to be thankful for: Rev Hubbard's look back (his brief mention is sufficient) and the fact that the manuscript was not lost (otherwise, would Thomas had been even more unknown?).

12/02/2011 -- Start a category, Backbone, which will be used for historical comment.

Modified: 11/05/2013

Monday, August 22, 2011

John Tylly

John deserves recognition for several reasons, not the least of which is that no account of Thomas' and Margaret's arrival and subsequent time at Cape Ann can be complete without mentioning John. We'll look at his background which seems to be as unknown as Thomas' might be. We also know that John was killed in 1636 at the time of the Pequot War.

John was in charge of the fishing effort. There has been much written about Cape Ann, including White's little Plea. Some, including White, cast aspersions on those who were there. Others have offered a more reasoned view, as we see depicted in this chapter on the Fisher Plantation and this report to the US Treasury, 1853.

Rev. Hubbard on
Tylly and Gardner
By the way, William Hubbard (1621-1704), in his retrospective, was the first to mention John and Thomas. One can envision those in that later 17th century time asking what happened; that is, what were the real people doing during the time; that is, those who did not spawn off countless words during their time here.


John and Thomas were part of the movement from Cape Ann to the Naumkeag area. Then, John seems to disappear. The Great Migration look (pg 1823) tries to make some sense. John was in the Dorchester area in the mid-1630s. He had a wife but no offspring.

John was active in coastal trade, seemed to go as far as Bermuda, and was killed in Connecticut as he tried to venture, despite warnings by Lion Gardiner, up the river to Hartford.


All sorts of questions remain to be answered, and old Rev White isn't here to say. How did these two men become leads in an effort that had such importance? And, then be pushed aside so easily? Ah, many, many more questions.

As said before, 'speculation' requires magical gains. In less than a decade, Massachusetts was shipping tons of fish to Europe. How could this happen in a year's time? Even with the Plymouth help (as they were there in Cape Ann, to boot, hence the conflict that Conant is supposed to have avoided), how could one expect for gains to accrue so quickly?

So much to deconstruct here. Thankfully, some have already started. Winthrop, and perhaps Rev White, wanted theocracy as a way of life. Though they were ahead of their time, John and Thomas were seen as 'irreligious' according to some. Actually, events 100 years in the future showed these two to be on the right path.

Hopefully, time and resources will get some of these types of things better answered.

Remarks: Modified: 03/21/2022

05/01/2012 -- Interest in the Old Planters is being assessed. Also, we'll do a sketch of John at this site

12/22/2012-- We need to differentiate between Old Planters of Beverly (see The Old Planters of Beverly in Massachusetts, 1930, Alice Gertrude Lapham, The Riverside Press) and the Old Planters of Massachusetts. One could even talk, Old Planters of New England.

10/11/2018 -- Some argument over who was first, in New Hampshire. Rev Hubbard was mentioned. As mentioned, he was the first one to mention Thomas Gardner. Too, his manuscript, though written in the 1600s, was not published until about one hundred and thirty years later. And, we almost lost it due to the mob rioting and doing damage to Hutchinson's dwelling, which, btw, was the Governor's mansion. So,  the good Reverend the Rodney Dangerfield of his time?

01/07/2019 -- Add snip from Rev. Hubbard's history that mentioned Tylly and Gardner.

03/21/2022 -- Our first post on John Tylly was on 22 Aug 2011 when we were newbies. We just did another post today under the name of John Tilley which is how the NEHGR identified him in an article in their Winter 2022 issue. In that post we link to research on the other Cape Ann families. 

Monday, August 15, 2011

Thomas' house

Firstly, we have no photo of the house. The attached drawing has appeared in several publications. We'll run down its source.

The house was put together by material brought over by the Cape Ann party. With such a small crew, there would have been room for a lot of material on the boat.

We might say that this is the house that Thomas built. Evidently, the building job was completed in 1624. Possibly, that would have allowed some shelter for their first winter. Who lived in the house?

One researcher suggested that the overseers used the house. Tilly didn't have a family. Did other families share the warmer space over that first winter?


We need to pull together all of the stories that have been told over the years.


Of course, we can say this is the house that Roger Conant took over with his coming into leadership at Cape Ann, in 1625, after his sojourn in Plymouth and Nantasket.

Too, we can say that this is the house that John Endicott had taken over to Salem for his use. See Higginson's description of Salem including the 'fair house' for the governor.


Obviously, it was the first 3-story house in New England, perhaps even in the eastern U.S. Before saying that, we would have to look at what the Spanish did in Florida. Jamestown put more into their fort than the houses.


Of course, what did the other houses that use locally fabricated material look like? And, to what did Thomas and Margaret move when Conant 'confiscated' the house?

We can surmise the construction style by comparing the Thomas house with the one (shown below) of George Soule (a re-creation) which illustrates both the material and the construction technique.

A little later, there would have been houses like we see with Balch (Beverly) and Whipple (Ipswich).


By 1626, the crew was on the move to what became Salem. Did they leave anyone behind in Cape Ann?

The house was not moved until later; was it occupied during that time? We know its location in Salem after the move. What eventually became of the house?


Finally, let's look at some of the economic realities, that will be addressed more fully, here and elsewhere, until we get the real story out there about Thomas and his kind (the real contributors).
  • The crew came into the area in the spring. Given that planting requires preparation, was there really enough time to do anything (even if there were good ground) that first year beyond sustenance? Hint: did not the group sustain itself? We did not hear of food problems of a major sort until the mass influx later that overwhelmed the supply.
  • The house took some of the effort from the crew. Even if all of the material was there, construction takes time, energy, and knowledge. Did this diversion impact fishing efforts, to boot? Again, the sustenance issue comes to fore.
  • I have said elsewhere that 'capital' was asking for its profit before giving enough time to the planters. Given what we know now about start up costs, were they not underestimated for this effort (or was the presence of the Church mindset necessarily associated with over-optimistic views -- of course, selling one's nephew down the river seemed to fit well that Church-obsessed mind)? One can also imagine all of the logistical nightmares? Just because this group was better prepared than their neighbors to the south did not lessen the difficulties that those who came over faced.
  • Asking for unreasonable profits still exists today (why else the impetus behind globalization -- and leaning, that is, push costs to your suppliers while not listening to their pangs as you squeeze out their blood); at this time, it would have been worse due to the nature of that aristocratic bent that had God's approval (Church, again, supposedly).
  • Of course, we know that Roger was no more capable than Thomas. How did those two relate (their offspring married, we'll get into that)? It is interesting that Roger, and his Old Planters, went off to what is now Beverly. Thomas and Margaret were still very much part of Salem (we'll put out, soon, a post on their 1641 location).
  • As said before, Thomas' offspring are strong evidence for him and Margaret. We'll detail each more fully. Too, he was referenced as 'Mr' and performed a whole lot of civic duty. Some have gone on about Roger's grace as he yielded to John (the Endicott, of course) for the greater good. Thomas, too, was graceful, in many more ways (we'll have to tell this tale -- essentially stayed well enough under the radar for all of his offspring to become effective adults).
That these economics considerations are pertinent in today's world seems to increase their potential interest.


03/19/2022 -- Nice to see research on the family of John Tilly. NEHGR, Winter, 2022 has an article on John and his family by Clifford L. Stott. The title is "Rev. William Tilley of Broadwindsor, Dorset, and His Sons in New England: John, Nathaniel, and William." Identifies his child and more. 

09/28/2014 -- A week ago, the record for the marriage of Thomas Gardner and Margaret Friar was discovered in Sherborne by John Cook of Minneapolis, Dorset files. This sets a type of focus. Looks as if some transcription work might be in order.  

01/25/2013 -- By the way, we're going to document this more thoroughly on Wikipedia - Great House (Cape Ann). We have John Goff's expertise available to assist us. This house was the first of its kind in New England.

11/27/2012 -- Let's itemize what we know, re-iterate some basics, and the proceed constructively.

10/28/2012 -- September issue had a theme of houses.

10/24/2012 -- John Goff (Salem's Witch House ..., pg 24) writes: After his arrival downtown in 1628, Endicott ruled that the old Thomas Gardner "Governor's House" from Cape Ann (built about 1623) be dismantled, moved by sea from Cape Ann to Naumkeag and be re-erected in earliest Salem to serve as a new Governor's House here. It stood north of the old shawmut on what is now Washington Street.

09/13/2012 -- About Margaret. We'll honor her as the ancestor, with Thomas, of the Gardner family.

05/01/2012 -- There will be a 'house' category, soon. Too, house is mentioned in the Maypole post.

12/17/2011 -- Tim Lambert's A World History Encyclopedia will be used much in this blog and in related material. Here is his description of colonial homes. By the way, we'll look at this, too. In Connecticut, where the cast offs (kidding) from Winthrop's world went, in part, they started to build big houses early. As in, the prototype for the American Mansion (and the McMansions) was worked right there south of Massachusetts. What was different? Multiple fireplaces, many rooms, large square feet, multiple cooking areas, servant quarters, and so forth.

12/02/2011 -- According to Felt, in the Annals of Salem, Endicott purchased, when he arrive, the house and have it moved from Cape Ann. Felt writes "It was then two stories high. Some of the remains of it are said to be still contained in the Old Tavern, at the corner of Court and Church Streets." Felt also mentions the reference to the house made by Higginson ("we found a faire house newly built for the Governor") when he arrived in Salem.

10/13/2011 -- Er, Margaret's house.

08/21/2011 -- Going through White's Plea may take some time. See Remarks 08/21/2o11.

08/16/2011 -- We will be using the Planters' Plea (from White) to get some better sense of what happened in that early period. Only Endicott is mentioned by name.

Modified: 03/19/2022

Saturday, August 13, 2011

White and Gardner family contributions

The motivation for this post comes mostly from a nice article written by John Goff, a descendant of Thomas. John heads Salem Preservation, Inc. Fortunately, there has been this type of effort as, at one time, Salem was disappearing due to progress and re-building.

When I first read this article a few months ago, I thought that we need to put December 29 on the calendar. That was the day of Thomas' death in 1674 in Salem. So, let's not forget to get something on Salem's Twitter roll, or even their Facebook page, on that date.


We earlier looked at where Thomas is now.


John Goff talks about the family of John White who was one of the supporters behind the efforts of the Dorchester Company. Many do not think about White when they consider the development of New England and the U.S.A. Too, Thomas is more than under the radar. John's article helps us to overcome that deficiency.


Roger Conant got his statue, finally, the last century. He had been known as the 'forgotten' founder (with Endicott, of course, taking the limelight).


John Goff, then, mentions a little about the Gardner contribution, which is large. I like to point to the descendants list, as an example. Expect that this list will grow as research continues.

For instance, John mentions a few families who are not on the list, yet, such as Gedney, Parkman, Greenough, and, of course, Goff. We'll be looking into that.


08/06/2016 -- More on All things Gardners.

09/05/2013 -- Nice site with information related to Rev. John White.

06/15/2013 -- John Farmer wrote that Thomas was from Scotland. Origins are, and will be, a focus.

10/27/2012 -- John Goff looks at the Corwin House in his book which mentions Rev. John White.

05/01/2012 -- We ought to remember Hawthorne every year, on this day.

08/21/2011 -- Added in some comments about the house built on Cape Ann and about the party's description by White (in his Planters' Plea). Seems to me, from this write up (the badly led and ill-disciplined landsmen left at Cape Ann), that Rev John threw Thomas into a group that included those at Morton's shindig at Wollaston.

Modified: 08/06/2016