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Knowles Family of New Bedford, MA

The family bearing this name in New Bedford, where it is one of nearly one hundred years’ standing one, too, of prominence and wealth, is a branch of the ancient Knowles family of the town of Eastham, Barnstable county, this Commonwealth. Reference is made to some of the descendants of the brothers Thomas and James H. Knowles of Eastham, several of whose sons – at least two of the former and one of the latter – in their earlier manhood cast their lot with the people of New Bedford. The firm of Thomas Knowles & Co. for many years was one of the greatest engaged in the whale fishery business in New Bedford; and its members in turn have been succeeded in business by younger generations who have most worthily worn the family name and sustained its reputation; and today the name continues of record in and about the city of their birth connected prominently with many of the most extensive commercial establishments and banking institutions of the locality.

Descendants of Francis Brayton of Fall River, MA

BRAYTON. The first in America by this name, one Francis Brayton, came from England to Portsmouth, Rhode Island, where, in 1643, he was received as an inhabitant, in 1655, became a freeman, and to him nearly if not all the Braytons of New England trace their origin. He early entered into the political life of the country, serving as a member of the General Court of Commissioners for the Colony, for many years as member of the Rhode Island General Assembly, and frequently during the later generations his descendants have held positions of responsibility and trust in the public offices of State and the private offices of the business world. The name is found on the rolls of the United States Army and Navy, and on the professional records of the clergy, the physician, and the lawyer. This article, however, is confined to one of the branches of the family several of whose members chose the commercial world for their sphere and through which, during the phenomenal growth of Fall River’s industrial life, the name of Brayton became prominent and influential. In 1714, Preserved Brayton, grandson of Francis, purchased 138 acres of land from William Little, whose father was one of the proprietors of the ShawomeOKt Purchase in Swanzey, Massachusetts. This farm, since known as the Brayton Homestead, borders on the west bank of the Taunton river and is located in the present town of Somerset, which, in 1790, was set apart from Swanzey (now spelled Swansea). Preserved had already married Content Coggeshall, the granddaughter of John Coggeshall, whose name is handed down in history as that of a...

Progressive Men of Western Colorado

This manuscript in it’s basic form is a volume of 948 biographies of prominent men and women, all leading citizens of Western Colorado. Western Colorado in this case covers the counties of: Archuleta, Chaffee, Delta, Eagle, Garfield, Gunnison, Hinsdale, La Plata, Lake, Mesa, Mineral, Moffat, Montezuma, Montrose, Ouray, Pitkin, Rio Blanco, Routt, San Juan, and San Miguel.

Staples Family of Taunton, MA

STAPLES (Taunton family). The Staples name is one of long and honorable standing in New England and the country. The family has been a continuous one in the Bay State for two hundred and seventy and more years, and at Taunton, in this Commonwealth, have lived generation after generation of the name down to the present – a worthy race, one representative of the best type of citizenship. Such men in more recent generations as the two Sylvanus Staples, father and son, and the latter’s son Sylvanus Nelson Staples, and the two Ebenezer Staples and Abiel B. Staples – all in line – have played well their part in the affairs of their communities in their day and generation. The Taunton Staples spring from the ancient Weymouth family of the name, from John Staple (the common spelling both in England and America at that period omitting the final “s”), who appears on the records of that town, it is said, in 1636. His wife’s name is given as Rebecca by the late Joseph W. Potter, of Bangor, Maine. John Staple became a freeman of the Colony May 10, 1648. He died July 4, 1683, in Dorchester, leaving according to his will, children John, Jr., of Braintree, Joseph of Taunton, Abraham of Mendon, Rebecca, wife of Samuel Sumner of Dorchester, and Sarah, wife of Increase Sumner, also of Dorchester. John Staple’s son Abraham was a proprietor of Mendon. He married in 1660 Mary, daughter of Robert Randall, of Weymouth, was a weaver by trade, served in King Philip’s war, and was known – probably from service in the militia –...

Brookfield Massachusetts Warnings 1737-1788

In the following information all the names, dates and other essential particulars which appear in the returns to the Court in the County of Worcester during the entire period – a full half-century, from 1737 to 1788 – in which these entries were made, are given. The returns from each place have been brought together and arranged under the name of the town or district, in this case Brookfield Massachusetts.

Richard Dexter Genealogy, 1642-1904

Being a history of the descendants of Richard Dexter of Malden, Massachusetts, from the notes of John Haven Dexter and original researches. Richard Dexter, who was admitted an inhabitant of Boston (New England), Feb. 28, 1642, came from within ten miles of the town of Slane, Co. Meath, Ireland, and belonged to a branch of that family of Dexter who were descendants of Richard de Excester, the Lord Justice of Ireland. He, with his wife Bridget, and three or more children, fled to England from the great Irish Massacre of the Protestants which commenced Oct. 27, 1641. When Richard Dexter and family left England and by what vessel, we are unable to state, but he could not have remained there long, as we know he was living at Boston prior to Feb. 28, 1642.

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