“My dear Cousin,–I am quite sure that I saw on your lawn that magnificent Clematis paniculata which I have just now ordered of Farquhar.
“But did I not also see two or three good autumn shrubs of the kind that make no vain glory? And, if I did, what are they?
“Love from all to all,
“Edward E. Hale
“The Everett Genealogy has come!
This letter is introduced because of its connection with the Everett Genealogy, which was presumably compiled by the late Edward F. Everett, although it was printed some months after his decease, and was completed by persons incapable of arranging, with accuracy, the records he left.
In this book my gr.-gr.-grandfather is made to appear under the name of Samuel5 Everett. There was never a Samuel in our line of ancestors. The record should have read: Ebenezer5 Everett, b. 1734, d. 1808; Isaac6 Everett, b. 1757, d. 1801 [his wid. Elizabeth [Tower] Everett d. 1842, age 86]; Joel7 Everett, b. 1789, d. 1855; Elizabeth8 Everett, b. 1816, d. 1904; she m., 1844, Almon Hemenway Davis, who made a record, now in my possession, in 1844, of our line of Everett ancestors. From a close examination of the dates of births and deaths given above, it will appear how easily this was done; for he conversed with parties to the Everett Genealogy whose memories covered all these dates. Mr. Davis was my father.
The late Dr. C. C. Everett, Dean of the Divinity School at Harvard University, Dr. Hale, and myself frequently talked of our ancestor Richard1 Everett, and questioned as to his birthplace in England. Dr. Everett believed that he was born at Dedham, England, which opinion has been adopted in the Everett Genealogy.
The first positive record we have of Richard Everett is at Agawam, now Springfield, on July 15, 1636, when he witnessed a deed from the Indians transferring land to William Pynchon and others. He is described in the History of Springfield as “Mr. Pynchons trader” (Mason A. Green, p. 24).
On Aug. 18, 1636, he is at Watertown, and attended the first recorded meeting of the proprietors of the new town, called Contentment, name afterwards changed to Dedham. His name was then spelled, and for several years after, Richard “Euered.”
Richard Everett m. first Mary , no record of birth, parentage, or death. He m. second, June 29, 1643, Mary Winch, who came in the ship Francis to Ipswich, April, 1638, age 15, a member of the family of Rowland Stebbins.
The Town Records of Dedham give a complete description of the town offices held by him, together with his church membership, the christening of his children, the amount of his yearly taxes, together with the date of his death, which occurred on July 3, 1682; inventory of estate, £277 15s. 11d. Wife Mary lived for several years after.
John2 Everett, bap. ” 15 d. 1 mo. 1642,” at Dedham; m. at Roxbury, May 13, 166, Elizabeth Pepper, b. at Roxbury May 25, 1645.
Elizabeth Pepper was dau. of Robert Pepper, freeman May 10, 1643, d. at Framingham, Jan. 5, 1684; mentions in his will daughters Elizabeth and Mary Everett of Dedham. The mother of Elizabeth [Pepper] Everett was Elizabeth Johnson, dau. of John Johnson, chosen by the General Court, Oct. 19, 1630, constable at Roxbury, and “surveyor of all the arms in the Colony.” “A very industrious and faithful man in his place” (Winthrop). “His house was burned 2  1645, with 17 bbls. of the country’s powder and many arms” (Winthrop). He was town officer and deputy; d. at Roxbury, July 30, 1659. His daughter, Elizabeth [Johnson] Pepper, d. Jan. 5, 1683.
Capt. John Everett was in active service in King William’s War; stationed at Portsmouth and elsewhere in Maine and New Hampshire.
See New Hampshire Provincial Papers and Massachusetts Military Archives.
He was fence-viewer in Dedham eleven years; constable four years; surveyor of highways and tithingman 1700.
His wife Elizabeth d. at Dedham, April 1, 1714; Capt. John Everett d. at Dedham, June 17, 1715.
Will proved July 7, 1715: “To my granddaughter, Hannah Crosbee Ten Pounds.” His second child, Hannah Everett, b. 1670, m. Simon Crosby of Billerica, son of Simon and Rachel [Brackett] Crosby.
John3 Everett, b. at Dedham, June 9, 1676; m. first, June 3, 1699-1700, Mercy Browne, who d. at Dedham, Nov. 27, 1748, aged 70; m. second, Aug. 31, 1749, Mrs. Mary Bennett of Wrentham.
Mercy Brown was grand-dau. of Thomas and Bridget Brown of Concord. He had 200 acres of land in Sudbury, 300 acres at Worcester, house and land in Cambridge. He d. probably in 1690: will probated in January, 1690, mentions son Boaz. Boaz Brown, b. at Concord, Dec. 14, 1641; m. Nov. 8, 1664, Mary Winship, dau. of Edward Winship, of Cambridge, by wife Jane. They were the parents of Mercy Browne. Edward1 Winship was proprietor in Cambridge 1635; sergeant 1643; deputy and town officer. He d. Dec. 2, 1688. Will prob. Oct. 1, 1689, mentions dau. Mary Brown
John Everett was selectman at Dedham, 1724-32, nine years. His name appears on a petition to the General Court, 1729, for a new parish in the south part of the town. This parish, the second in the town, was established in 1630. John Everett was its first moderator. He was also the first deacon in the new church, and was appointed assessor. His will prob. April 2, 1751, mentions son Ebenezer Everett.
Ebenezer4 Everett, b. at Dedham, Aug. 5, 1707; m. March 9, 1734, at North Andover, Mass., Joanna Stevens, dau. of Ebenezer and Sarah [Sprague] Stevens, b. Sept. 11, 1711, d. June 21, 1791.
Ebenezer Everett lived for several years at Methuen, Mass. He was dismissed from the First Church in Methuen to the Second Church in Dedham, March 22, 1742. He was chosen deacon of this Second Church, Nov. 30, 1760; selectman 1760-64. He d. June 19, 1778. His will prob. July 17, 1778, mentions son Ebenezer.
Ebenezer5 Everett, b. at Dedham, Oct. 7, 1784; m. at Dedham, first, Dec. 16, 1756, Abigail Bacon, b. at Dedham, 1738; d. at Dedham, June 12, 1789.
Abigail Bacon was descended from Michael1 Bacon, one of the original proprietors of Dedham: “Tradition says he held the office of captain of a company of yeomanry in Suffolk County, England.” Her father was Capt. William Bacon, who raised a company for the Crown Point expedition in the French and Indian War. He m. Nov. 17, 1736, Abigail Dean, of Dedham.
Capt. Everett m. second, March 22, 1791, at Dedham, Mrs. Abigail [Fisher] Kingsbury, b. March 8, 1736-7, d. June 14, 1809.
Ebenezer Everett lived in Dedham, where he was received into the Second Church, March 2, 1760. He was elected deacon July 13, 1778, and was town treasurer in 1780. He served in the French and Indian War and in the Revolution. He was ensign, and marched on the alarm of the 19th of April, 1775, and served ten days. He was also at Dorchester Heights.
“Ebenezer Everett–Petition dated Dedham, March 21, 1780, signed by said Everett that he had been appointed Captain of 7th co., Col. William McIntash’s [McIntosh's] 1st Suffolk Co. regt., in May, 1776; that he had been frequently called upon to raise and fit men for the army, &c., but that owing to ill health he was no longer able to fulfill the duties of the office and asking that his resignation be accepted; ordered in Council July 8, 1780, that the resignation be accepted.” (Massachusetts Soldiers and Sailors in the War of the Revolution, p. 424.)
Capt. Ebenezer Everett d. at Dedham, Oct. 1, 1808.
Isaac6 Everett, b. at Dedham, Dec. 21, 1757; m. May 8, 1786, Elizabeth Tower of “Tower Hill,” Braintree.
John1 Tower was b. at Hingham, England, bap. 1607: he was the son of Robert and Dorithie [Damon] Tower. The mother, Dorothy, was buried at Hingham, England, Nov. 10, 1629; the father, Robert, was buried in the same place, May 1, 1634. John Cushing of Hingham, in New England, made this record: “1637. John Tower and Samuel Lincoln came from Old Hingham and settled in New Hingham” [Samuel Lincoln was the ancestor of Abraham Lincoln].
We do not know the reasons why John Tower left a comfortable home in England for the hardships of a life in the wilderness, probably for the same reasons which induced so many others to emigrate during the period between 1630 and 1640.
Among the parishes in England in sympathy with the Puritan movement was that of Hingham, where Robert Peck had been installed as rector a few years before John Tower was born, and under whose ministry John Tower had passed the whole period of his life up to the time of his emigration. Robert Peck had become so decided in expressing his opinions as to receive admonition from his superior, Bishop Wren. He was asked to reform his opinions. Later he came under the censure of Bishop Laud. He was then obliged to retract or leave the country, which he did in 1638, with his wife, two children, and two servants, settling in Hingham, New England, where he was ordained teacher of the church, Nov. 28, 1638. He returned to England with his family, October, 1641. Rev. Peter Hobart (grad. Magdalen Coll., England) came from Hingham, England, with his father Edmund, Sr., who settled in Hingham, New England, where the father was deputy. There was a brother, Josiah, who became a very prominent and useful citizen at Hingham. Rev. Peter2 Hobart was minister at Hingham for forty-four years. [Rev. Peter Hobart was one of the writer's ancestors, as will appear later.] There were several families that came from their English home at Hingham and settled in New Hingham. It is said that many of these sold out their possessions at a great sacrifice. It does not appear that John Tower made any sacrifice. In those times it was not uncommon for young men without means to secure their passage as “servants” to some one who was able to pay the passage money. The ancestors of some of our now opulent people came into this country as servants.
John Tower seems to have had means sufficient to pay his passage and to establish himself after his arrival. He received several grants in land, and also land by purchase.
He was made freeman March 13, 1638-9. His house-lot was a grant of three acres, soon after his arrival, on Batchelor, now Main, Street. In 1645 he was one of seven men “to order the prudential affairs of the town.” In conveyances he was called “Planter.”
John Tower, when he settled at Hingham, was not among strangers. He had known many of them before leaving England, the Hobarts and Lincolns being among these. On Feb. 13, 1638-9, he m. at Charlestown, Mass., Margerett [born in England], dau. of Richard Ibrook: she had two sisters, one of whom became the wife of Capt. Josiah Hobart, and the other was the second wife of the brother, Rev. Peter Hobart. Margerett died at Hingham, May 15, 1700. John Tower d. at Hingham, Feb. 13, 1701-2, age 93.
John2 Tower, bap. at Hingham, Dec. 13, 1639; m. at Hingham, May 14, 1669, Sarah Hardin, dau. of John of Weymouth, 1643. He removed after 1682 to Braintree. He was a farmer. He d. at Braintree, Aug. 30, 1693; his wid. d. Oct. 16, 1729.
Joseph3 Tower, b. Feb. 27, 1685-6; m., 1709, Ruth Thayer, b. at Braintree, July 17, 1689,
dau. of Nathaniel3 Thayer by w. Hannah Hayden; granddau. of Richard2 Thayer by w. Dorothy Pray; great-grand-dau. of Richard1 Thayer, settled in Braintree, freeman 1640. Nathaniel3 Thayer was a man of property and respectability. He names his uncle, Penn Townsend, judge of the Superior Court of Sufolk, executor of his will, dated May 15, 1703. He was the ancestor of Col. Sylvanus Thayer, “the father of West Point,” who occupied the homestead of his grandfather until his death.
Ruth Thayer Tower d. at Braintree, March 28, 1752. Joseph Tower d. at Braintree, 1761. No will.
Joseph4 Tower, b. at Braintree, Jan. 10, 1725; m. three times: first, at Braintree, 1751, Sarah Adams, b. at Braintree, March 4, 1726,
dau. of Samuel4 Adams by w. Sarah Paine; grand-dau. Joseph3 Adams by w. Hannah Bass, dau. of John and Ruth [Alden] Bass. Ruth2 Alden was dau. of John and Priscilla [Mullens] Alden, of the “Mayflower” [Mullens was one of the "merchant adventurers"]; gr.-grand-dau. Joseph
Adams by w. Abigail Baxter, son of Henry1 Adams.
Capt. Joseph Tower lived in that part of Braintree afterwards incorporated as “Tower Hill,” Randolph. He was a farmer. He was a soldier in the French and Indian Wars, and was over fifty years old when he marched as sergeant in Capt. Seth Turner’s Company on April 19, 1775. He was afterwards promoted to captain. (See Massachusetts Soldiers and Sailors in the War of the Revolution, p. 894.) He d. at Randolph, Sept. 7, 1801; wife, Sarah Adams, d. 1756.
Elizabeth Tower, b. at Braintree, Jan. 15, 1756; m. May 8, 1786, Isaac6 Everett; she d. in Dedham, Oct. 16, 1842.
The life of Isaac Everett was one of hardship. At the age of eighteen he was in the fight on Lexington Green, and was wounded: “Isaac Everett, Dedham. Private, Capt. William Ellis’s co., Col. Heath’s regt., which marched on the alarm of April 19, 1775.” (Massachusetts Soldiers and Sailors in the War of the Revolution, p. 421.) “Wounded at the Battle of Lexington, Isaac Everett of Dedham.” (Hudson’s History of Lexington, p. 212.) The following is a letter from Rev. Edward Everett Hale, D. D.:
“OCT. 23, 1893.
“Dear Cousin,-The Lexington grandfather was wounded. I have somewhere a copy of the charge of the Doctor who attended him. If I can find it, you shall see it.
“E. E. HALE.”
Isaac Everett continued with the army until the end of the war. He was at Dorchester Heights [service 4 days when the British evacuated Boston. (Massachusetts Soldiers and Sailors in the War of the Revolution, p. 429.)
Afterwards he was a teamster with supplies for Washington's army, "journeying long distances, and enduring much suffering with fortitude."
The writer does not recall the name of any one of her ancestors whose life to her seems quite so pathetic. His life was caught in the grip of the Revolution. At eighteen he was a soldier, wounded at Lexington; and again one of those soldiers who made that tedious march and fortified Dorchester Heights; and then those long years in which he followed Washington's army with supplies, witnessing the suffering from sickness, the cold and lack of food, all of which he had an intimate acquaintance with, and was a sharer in, and which consumed all the years of his young manhood; waiting for ten years to make the young girl to whom he had been betrothed, now grown beyond her first youth, his bride. Broken in health, but with courage facing the future, he had hardly begun to get hold of the realities of a home life with its joy and its comfort, when he died, "worn out," said his widow, at the age of 46, "from the suffering and exposure of the dreadful war." A beautiful grove in Dedham has for more than a hundred years been known as "Everett's Woods." It was his property when living.
Isaac Everett d. Nov. 12, 1801. Wid. Elizabeth, executrix.
In connection with the military service of Capt. Ebenezer Everett and his son Isaac Everett, the writer prints the following relating to Dedham :
"A little after nine o'clock in the morning, there came a horseman down the Needham road to bring the Lexington alarm. The minute men were ready and knew just what to do. There are traditions still kept of the plough being left in the furrow, and the cart upon the highway, and the drivers mounting their horses and galloping for their muskets and accoutrements." (From ,250th Anniversary of the Town of Dedham.)
"In all, including the minute men and the militia, three hundred men under arms must have marched from Dedham on that historic day. Nor were these all. The gray haired veterans of the French War, whose blood was stirred anew by the sights and sounds of war, resolved to follow their sons to the battle. Assembled on the Common before this meeting-house, they met Rev. Mr. Gorden, who had just come to Dedham; and he from the eastern porch offered prayer, and then they marched." (Ibid., p. 78.)
" Well may we believe, as we have been told, that the town was left `almost literally without a male inhabitant below the age of seventy and above the age of sixteen."' (Haven's Centennial Address, p. 46.) Joel7 Everett, b. at Walpole, Mass., Feb. 22, 1789;
the only child born to Isaac and Elizabeth Everett;
m. in the Episcopal church at Dedham, Nov. 30, 1811, Miss Catherine Smith. No couple ever entered married life with seemingly fairer prospects. Isaac Everett moved back into Dedham soon after the birth of his son Joel. At twelve years old this father, Isaac Everett, had died. His mother, Elizabeth, was approaching middle life. It was considered the best thing among the family relatives to place Joel Everett in the home of Rev. Peter Thacher, a bachelor minister of the Clapboard Trees Church, Dedham. He was a scholar of repute, who in addition to his preaching had boarders, mostly young men from the Southern families, whom he prepared for college. It was not the school for young Everett.
Mr. Thacher had much contrition of spirit in later years that he had not been more faithful to this young boy whose people had been his parishioners.
After a few years he was for some time in the family of his Everett uncles, Rev. and Judge Oliver and Rev. and Judge Moses Everett, at Dorchester. The intimacy thus formed continued in both families until his death. He met with a terrible accident in the winter of 1820, which crippled him for life: he became a recluse, and never visited, excepting with a few of his Everett relatives. He was very distinguished in personal appearance, even after the accident, a gentleman of charming address, and a brilliant conversationalist.
The writer has always remembered her grandfather Everett with great distinctness. She was with him often during the first ten years of her life. She was a favorite grandchild, who received much instruction from him. His personality was strikingly like that of his cousin, the Hon. Edward Everett.
His wife Catherine [Smith] Everett d. in Dedham, Dec. 21, 1821, leaving three sons and two daughters. Joel Everett had a small property, which to the end of his life was sufficient for all his physical needs. He built a house in Natick, Mass., where his daughter, Mrs. Rice, lived, which was burned without insurance. He built again on the same site on North Main Street, bounded on one side by Everett Street. In this house he died on the morning of Feb. 22, 1855, his 66th birthday. The funeral was in the church, the minister preaching from the text, “If a man die, shall he live again?” The burial was in Dell Park Cemetery.
Elizabeth8 Everett, b. at Dedham, Mass., July 31, 1816; m. at Dedham, May 12, 1844, Almon6 Hemenway Davis of Boston. Rev. Nathan Rice, who married Catherine Everett, a sister of Elizabeth, was the officiating clergyman. It was in the boarding-school of Marshall Rice, at Newton Centre, a brother of Nathan Rice, that Mr. Davis made the acquaintance of Elizabeth Everett.
It is difficult to write of one’s mother. You are so closely associated with your mother that you have no perspective. She enters your first thoughts; in youth you cling to her as personal comforter; in age you know that no love ever endures that is quite so loving, unselfish, and patient. This is the good mother.
Elizabeth [Everett] Davis was of medium height; she had the complexion of her mother [this her father told her]; she had a very fair skin, with light brown hair and blue eyes [her father's eyes were called "hazel"]; the contour of her face was like her father; the same aquiline nose, the deep-set eye, the high rounded forehead, the firm-set lips; a speech that gave the impression of a beautiful, honorable character. Yes, she was like her father: she had all of his reticence with his geniality. Her father never spoke to her more than once or twice of her mother. She had but one memory of this mother, and that of the morning before she died, when, putting her hand on the little daughter’s head, and gently stroking it, the mother said to her, “I am going far away, and after I am gone you must remember to be very good.” Then there was the funeral, with the long walk to the grave, and herself dressed all in black. She never forgot this one interview with her mother, which she interpreted to mean an injunction laid upon her to be faithful and devoted to the family; and such she proved herself to be. She adored her father.
My mother had large generosity. She was extremely kindly to the poor and suffering. In her last days she said, “I am glad I have never allowed any one to go away hungry from my door.” And so she passed through life, performing kindly acts, a real lover of mankind. She was like her father, liberal in religious thought. One peculiarity she had above other women: she always held a youthful expression; no one ever thought of her as being old. She was clear in her thought until the end, holding no fear of death. She died in the home of her son, Edward Everett Davis, at Dehesa, San Diego County, Cal., on the 6th of December, 1904, wishing to go to her mother and father. At her funeral her grandson, Sumner Crosby, read by her request verses from which the following is one:
“And so for me there is no sting to death,
And so the grave has lost its victory;
It is but crossing with abated breath,
And with set face, a strip of sea,
To find the loved ones waiting on the shore,
More beautiful, more precious than before.”
“SENATE CHAMBER, Dec. 8, 1906.
“My dear Cousin,–I have just read in the Transcript the death of your dear mother, which has come as a great shock and surprise, for we did not know that she was ill. Do please write at once the particulars. I hope you will be able to say that she passed on without suffering. There is nothing to compare with the death of your mother. I was never anything but the boy, Edward, to my mother so long as she lived, and the same was true of your mother. You never grew up in her mind, you were always her child.
“Yours with affection and sympathy, in which Emily joins,
” E. E. HALE.
The Last Word
“Fate takes the pen and with resistless hand
Sets down man’s sum of life,-so many days,
So many journeys along destined ways,
So many hopes wrecked on a foredoomed strand,
So many griefs that none shall understand,
And strivings none shall pity or shall praise.
So many joys from brief and passionate blaze
Trampled to blackness,-all foreknown, foreplanned.
Yet man, not fate, decides life’s final word;
Still must he add what doubles all the rest
Or make it nothing-still despairing write,
`Woe is me unhappy!’-or, with courage stirred
To an unfaltering flame, sum up each test,
And set down calmly, `I have fought the fight.”