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Early Colonial Wars
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Loea Parker Howard
d. I ^H^z i^C
INDEX OF READING MEN IN THE
BACHELOR, DAVID .
BACHELOR, JOHN .
BANCROFT, JOSEPH .
BANCROFT, SAMUEL .
BANCROFT, THOMAS 3rD
BATT, JOHN .
BEARD, EBENEZER .
BROWN, JOHN, JR. .
BROWN, THOMAS, JR.
BOUT WELL, JOHN .
BOUTWELL, JOHN, JR.
BRYANT, ABRAHAM .
BRYANT, ABRAHAM, JR.
BRYANT, JEREMIAH, JR.
BRYANT, JONATHAN .
BRYANT, TIMOTHY .
BRYANT, WILLIAM, JR.
BURNAP, BENJAMIN .
BURNAP, JOHN .
BUXTON, JOHN .
CARR, JAMES 10
CHAMBERLAIN, EDWARD 22
COGGIN, WILLIAM 28
COWDREY, NATHANIEL 29
DIX, JOHN . . 26
DIX, JONATHAN 31
DAMON, EBENEZER 22
DAMON, JABEZ 30
DAMON, THOMAS . . . . . . . 23
DAMON, SAMUEL 10
DAVIS, BENJAMIN , . 6
EATON, JOHN 12
EATON, JONATHAN . . ,. . . 21, 26, 27, 30
EATON, JOSHUA 28
EATON, THOMAS 22
EATON, THOMAS, JR 27, 30
EATON, TIMOTHY 31
EMERSON, JOHN 30
EMERSON, PETER 30
EMERY, JOHN . 27
FAY, JOSIAH 26
FELCH, JOSEPH 29
FLINT, BENJAMIN 26
FLINT, DANIEL 32
FLINT, EBENEZER 32
FLINT, ELIEZER 32
FLINT, JAMES 31
FLINT, JOSEPH 27, 32
FLINT, KENDALL 26
FLINT, THOMAS 31, 33
FLINT, YOUNG 33
FOSTER, ABRAHAM 22
FOSTER, ABRAHAM, JR 29
FOSTER, JONATHAN 27
FOSTER, SAMUEL 6
GARDNER, DANIEL 30
GILBERT, JOSEPH 27
GOING, (go WING?) EBENEZER 26
GOODWIN, KENDALL 28
GOODWIN, NATHANIEL 17
GOODWIN, TIMOTHY 22
GOULD, WILLIAM . . . . . . .26
GREENE, DAVID 29
HARNDEN, JOHN 13
HARNDEN, SAMUEL 23
HARTSHORN, JAMES 29
HARTSHORN, JONATHAN 24
HARTSHORN, JOSEPH 6
HARTSHORN, SAMUEL 23
HARTSHORN, SAMUEL, JR 26
HASEY, WILLIAM 11
HODGMAN, THOMAS 6
JOHNSON, EDWARD (Wobum) 1
JEFFREY, JOHN . . . . . . . 24
JENKIN, LEMUELL 28
JAQUITH, JONATHAN 30
JONES, WILLIAM 6
KENDALL, ASA . . 26
KENDALL, JOHN 26
KNIGHT, STEPHEN 28
LAMSON, SAMUEL 10
LAMSON, SAMUEL, JR 23
LAMSON, THOMAS 10
LOVEJOY, PHINEAS 28
LUNN, NICHOLAS 10
LYNDE, (lYNDSEY?) HUGH 27
MANNING, WILLIAM .
NICHOLS, BENJAMIN .
. 23, 29
NICHOLS, DIDEMUS .
NICHOLS, JOSEPH .
NICHOLS, JOSHUA .
NICHOLS, THOMAS .
. 10, 21
NICHOLS, TIMOTHY, JR.
NOYES, ISAAC .
PARKER, ASA .
. 27, 33
PARKER, EBENEZER .
PARKER, EPHRAIM .
. 28, 30
PARKER, HANANIAH, JR. .
PARKER, JOHN . .
PARKER, JONATHAN .
PARKER, JONATHAN, JR. .
PARKER, PHINEAS .
PARKER, THOMAS, JR.
PIKE, JAMES, JR. .
POOLE, BENJAMIN .
POOLE, JAMES .
POOLE, JOHN .
4, 5, 6
POOLE, JONATHAN, JR. .
PROYT, (PRATT?) WILLIAM .
RAYNER, THOMAS .
ROBBINS, WILLIAM .
RUSSELL, TIMOTHY .
SAVAGE, EPHRAIM .
SAWYER, WILLIAM .
SHELDEN, WILLIAM .
SHELDING, ( SHELDEN?) A
STICKNEY, ABRAHAM .
STIMPSON, JAMES .
STIMPSON, WILLIAM .
SWAYNE, JEREMIAH .
TAYLOR, SEABRED .
UPTON, JACOB .
WALTON, JOSIAH, Jf
WILLIAMS, JAMES .
The Reading Chronicle Press, Inc
The records of Reading men in the Colonial
wars are widely scattered in various official
documents and give a very imperfect idea of
who the soldiers were, or when and where their
service took place. For this reason, I have gath-
ered these items of local history into one pam-
phlet that will give a better picture of the heroic
sacrifices made by our early townsmen in the
defense of their homes and their Colony.
These records have been copied from pay
rolls, muster rolls, orders of the military coun-
cil on file in the State Archives ; from town and
family records; and from a few soldiers' jour-
als. It is probable that some documents contain-
ing the names of Reading soldiers have been
overlooked. The notes giving the year of birth
and the father's name will help to identify the
soldier, but will not always prove reliable, as the
Town records sometimes list two persons with
the same name and year of birth. I hope that
descendants of these men will inform me of
omissions and errors ; and add information from
their own family records.
Material for the text has been found, in the
Soldiers of King- Philip's War by Bodge, Syl-
vester's Indian Wars of New England, Eaton's
History, the 250th Anniversary Volume, and
the Reading Town Records. The library of the
Ne,w England Historic Genealogical Society
and the local histories in the Woburn Pub-
lic Library have also been of great assistance.
IvOea Parker Howard
April 19, 1934.
Early Colonial Wars
READING'S EARLIEST SOLDIER
In obedience to the laws of the Massachu-
setts Bay Colony, an Infantry Company was
formed in Reading soon after its incorporation
in 1644. Richard Walker was its first captain.
He had been an ensign under Col. John Endi-
cott of Salem as early as 1636. He and Edward
Johnson, captain of the Woburn company, were
members of the Ancient and Honorable Artil-
lery Company together, and doubtless were well
acquainted. In his history of New England
towns, Johnson wrote that when skirmishing at
"He fought the Eastern Indians there
Whose poisoned arrows filled the air
And two of which, those angry foes
Lodged safe in Captain Walker's clothes."
Capt. Walker and two others appointed by
the Assembly, made a treaty of neutrality in
1645 with the French of Arcadia.
He was a selectman and a representative
from Reading and owned over 300 acres of land
here. His homestead was on the present Elm
street (Wakefield) near Winn street, and ex-
tended to the shore of the '^Create Pond," inr
chiding land recenty owned by the Ice Com-
pany and the Lakeside Cemetry.
He rettirned to Lynn and died there.
KING PHILIP'S WAR
The cruel, treacherous treatment of Chief
Miantonomo by the Boston and Plymouth au-
thorities had cost them the help of the power-
ful Narrangansetts, and by September 1675,
Philip, chief of the Pokanokets, had the sup-
port of all the tribes from the Merrimac to
the Connecticut in a long and desperate at-
tempt to destroy the New England settlements.
The towns in the Connecticut Valley suffered
from severe attacks and Major Samuel Apple-
ton of Ipswich was placed in command of the
troops sent to their relief. He promoted En-
sign Jonathan Poole of Reading to be one of
his captains, and placed his company north of
the town of Hatfield. The Council objected to
this assumption of authority by Major Apple-
ton, but he justified his action by the desperate
situation that confronted him, and the Council
confirmed the appointment after a personal in-
terview with Captain Poole.
Plubbard's account of the attack on Hatfield
October 19, 1675, states "that seven or eight
hundred Indians came upon the Town in all
Quarters .... But they were so well entertained
on all Hands where they attempted to break in
upon the Town that they found it too hot for
them, Major Appleton with great courage de-
fending one end of the Town, Captain Mosely
as stoutly maintaining the Middle, and Captain
Poole the other end."
In November, when the troops were distri-
buted to the garrisons of various towns, Capt.
Poole was assigned to Hadley with 30 of his
men. Soon afterward Major Appleton was
withdrawn from the Connecticut Valley and
Captain Poole was left in command there dur-
ing the following winter. How well he per-
formed his arduous duties is shown in a letter,
addressed to the Massachusetts Council by the
Rev. Mr. Russell:
''Hadley, March 16, 1676
Capt. Poole who hath been last here for ye
government of ye souldiers and as president of
ye Council of warr here doth earnestly entreate
for a liberty to repaire to his own very much
suffering family at least for a while. We may
not be so selfish as to be unsensible to his kind-
nesse to us in his stay here or the losse to him
thereby so as to hinder ye promoting of any
rational request consistent with public safety:
We are thankfuU for what blessing God hath
made him to us, desirous to retain him while
not to much to his prejudice. He signifies to us
yt there is now in the army a man of ye same
Town viz Redding by Name Mr. John Brown
whom he judgeth very fitt to oversee ye soul-
diers''. Capt. Poole's request was granted; he
lived only two years after his retirement from
Vol. 68, p. 163
Reading Men In Captain Jonathan Poole's Company
Jonathan Poole^ Samuel Foster^
Joseph Hartshorn^ William Jones
Benjamin Davis^ John Burnap^
James Pike, Jr.^ Thomas Hodgman'^
Phineas Upham, Lieut.^ Edward Brown^^
1. Capt, Jonathan Poole, b. 1634, d. 1678, son of John Poole
one of the earliest and wealthiest settlers of Reading. They
lived on the site of the Wakefield Rattan Works and owned
a grist-mill and a fulling mill there.
2. Joseph Hartshorn, b. 1652, d. , lived on the south side
of Elm St. opposite Winn St., Wakefield.
3. Benj. Davis was probably a son of George Davis who
came from Lynn; was in the list of house holders in Read-
4. James Pike owned the old Jaquith house, now re-
placed by that of the late Wendell Bancroft. This home-
stead extended along Washington St. as far as the Parker
Tavern. Sold before 1699 to Ens. Nathaniel Parker whose
land lay to the east.
5. Samuel Foster's farm included the Meadow Brook Golf
Course, west of Grove St. and north to the Ipswich River.
6. John Burnap, b. 1654. In 1708 sold his house, barn and
orchard on the east side of High St., north of the Jaquith
place to Lieut. Nath'l Parker. Later the Burnap homestead
was on Ash St., south and east of the present Reading Green-
7. Thomas Hodgman was a house holder in 1667. His
son Josiah's homestead of 36 acres was south of Scotland
Hill and the Prescott farm.
8. Lieut. Phineas Upham: b. in Maiden but credited to
Reading; was severely wounded.
9. John Boutel, b. 1645. The Boutel homestead was near
the Dana Parker place on Salem St., extending north into
the present cemetery.
10. Edward Brown, b. 1640. Son of Nicholas Brown who
owned the Lucius Beebe place east of the "Pond"; in 1638,
the town of Lynn gave him 210 acres within the bounds of
The Great Swamp Fight
Major Appleton was withdrawn from the
Connecticut Valley so that he might direct the,
Massachusetts forces that assembled at Wick-
ford, R. L, to attack King PhiHp's stronghold.
His lieutenant in the First Middlesex Company,
was Jeremiah Swayne^ of Reading.
"At daybreak on Dec. 19, the troops from
Massachusetts, Rhode Island and Connecticut
began their long march of sixteen miles through
intense cold and a heavy snow storm. They
reached the Indian fort at about two o'clock.
Without waiting for any organized attack, the
Massachusetts men being in front rushed for-
ward across the ice in an impetuous charge. The
first company to enter met with a terrible fir^e
from the front and the flanks. Others coming
an piercing into the breach though suffering
severe losses, drove the Indians from the fort
and into the swamp and woods beyond, and set
fire to the fort. Then through a bitter winter
night, these men who had marched from dawn
till high noon, had engaged in a desperate life
1. Maj. Jeremiah Swayne, b. 1643, d. 1710, son of Jeremiah
who early came to Reading from Charlestown. Major Swayne
was a physican and was highly valued for his service in be-
half of both town and colony. The Swayne homestead was in
the eastern part of the present town of Wakefield on the
"country way" from Saugus to Reading.
and death struggle from noon till sunset, now
carrying more than two hundred dead and
'wounded, plodded in the deepening snow and
unbroken roads for sixteen miles to their quar-
ters of the day before." A score of the wounded
died during that terrible night march. Seven
captains leading their men were killed, and four
other officers were wounded, among the latter
was Lieut. Swayne.
"Order of the General Court, Sept. 16, 1676.
Whereas at the firing of M^jor Appleton's
tent at Narragansett, divers armes and clothes
were lost by the fier belonging to particular per-
sons, a lyst of whom is taken and is in the hands
of Captain Swayne then left to Major Appleton ;
who heretofore have received no sattisfaction
for the same, this Court doth order that repara-
tion be made by the country to the persons
damnified by sayd fier.''
On Dec. 10, 1675 when the Massachusetts
soldiers were assembled on Dedham Plain to be-
gin their march against King Philip's strong-
hold, a proclamation was made to them in the
name of the Governor, "that if they played the
man, took the fort and drove the enemy out of
the Narragansett country, they should have a
gratuity of land besides their wages."
Alter the war they petitioned the General
Court to redeem this promise and received the
following answer :
''In answer to the petition of John Lynsey,
Robert Porter, Senr. and 22 more inhabitants of
Lyn, Jeremiah Swayne, Samuel Dammon, Sam-
uel Lambson, William Robbins, James Pyke, Jr.,
and James Nicholls of Reading, Wm. Raymond
and 5 more of Beverly and Samuel Lincolne
and three more of Hingham, the Court Judgeth
it meet to grant the petitioners a tract of Land
in the Nipmug country of eight miles square
for their encouragement." This and other later
grants were known as the Narragansett Towns
of Westminister, Templeton, Amherst, (N. H.)
and Buxton, (Me.) Several Reading families
settled in this territory. In 1677, Reading voted
six acres of land to each man who was in this
war with the provision "that they shall not
sell except to one of their number." In 1686,
the town "gave to Capt. Swayne his choice of
fifty acres" at a place called Edward's Neck
that joins the Woburn line."
Reading Men In The Swamp Fight
''Oct. 10, 1675, A Return to the Council by
Lieut. Thomas Bancroft^ on request of his
Capt. Gookin, of Reading men impressed by
Samuel Lamson^ ^Thomas Nichols^
James Carr Nicholas Lunn
"^David Bachelor^ '^W'illiam Robbins
^Samuel Damon* William Roberts
The following volunteered:
"^ James Nichols^ "^Seabred Taylor"^
*Thomas Lamson "^Thomas Brown
*Men in Capt. Davenport's company that led the van in the
charge on King PhiHp's stronghold.
1. In 1673, Capt. Thomas Bancroft married SaTah Poole
and settled on a large farm on West St., given to them by
Capt. Jonathan Poole and Lieut. Thomas Bancroft of Lynn-
field. The Bancroft part was a lot given to Capt. Richard
Walker by the Town in 1652.
2. Samuel Lamson hved near Salem and Pearl Sts., where
Francis Kingman lived later.
3. David Bachelor, bap. in Dedham 1643, son of John
who came to Reading and bought a homestead of Henry Felch
(Wakefield) in 1648.
4. Samuel Damon lived in the neighborhood of John and
5. Thomas Nichols, eldest son of Richard and Annis who
lived on Elm St., Wakefield, was a captain, a selectman for
William Robbins, married 1680 Precilla "Going", Reading.
6. James Nichols : b. 1658, d. 1745, a brother of Capt. Thom-
as. In 1732 gave a half of his homestead on High St. adjoining
Ensign Nath'l Parker to his son Ebenezer, later a colonel.
7. Seabred Taylor, b. 1643. d. 1714. The Taylor family
lived in North Reading, near "Pudding Point".
In Capt. David Henchman's company were
Thomas Parker, Jr./ and Sergt. John Parker^
sons of Deacon Thomas^ the emigrant. Jona-
than, a third son, was with Thomas Bancroft
in the garrison at Groton in Dec. 1675.
Sergt. Ephraim Savage was in charge of the
garrison at Quoboag (Brookfield) early in 1676.
When the Indians destroyed Saco in 1676,
Robert Temple who had been there since 1670
was killed, and his family fled to Boston. His
son, Richard^ came to Reading and will be
mentioned in connection with a later war.
In a pay-roll of the Three County Troop,
Oct. 1675, under Lieut. Wm. Hasey of Read-
1. Thomas Parker Jr., 1636-1699, lived near junction of
Salem and Lowell Sts. in the eastern part of Wakefield.
2. Sergt. John Parker, 1640-1688, lived on Prospect St.
at Bare Hill. Brook Rd. A picture of his house is on p. 19
of the Memorial Volume. He was wounded on July 18, 1675,
near Pocasset, R. I.
Jonathan Parker, 1656-1680.
3. Deacon Thomas Parker's homestead was a few rods
north of the present Wakefield Town Hall. John Parker (3)
sold it to Jonathan Poole before 1712. See the Parker Gene-
alogy by Theodore Parker.
4. Richard Temple in 1697 bought sixteen acres of land,
with a house, barn and orchard of James Pike. It included the
land from Summer Ave. to the meadow east of the W. S. Park-
er School. In 1698 he bought 18 acres adjoining of the widow
of Benj. Hartshorn.
ing besides several Reading men named else-
where, are the names of John Brown b. 1634,
John Eaton^ (of the Playne) b. 1645, and John
Bachelor, b. 1643.
In March 1677, the garrison on the Ken-
nebeck at Richmond's Id. was recalled to
Piscataqua (Saco) to which place Capt. Swayne
led his fifty men and ten natives for the relief
of tjie settlers who scattered from Dover to
Wells, began to suffer from the destruction
wrought by the prowling savages.
The horrors of Indian warfare were brought
home to Reading people before the close of
Philip's War. In August, 1675 Billerica was at-
tacked and fourteen people killed or captured.
Col. Lynde reported on the 23rd, "I went that
night to Billerica where I found about 300 men
in arms from Woburn, Reading and Medford
under conduct of Miaj. Wm. Johnson, Maj. Jere-
miah Swayne and Maj. Wade. That night we
marched to the Merrimack and guarded the
three fords between Andover and Chelmsford."
On Apr. 10, 1676, Samuel Richardson, whose
farm was on the eastern border of Woburn, was
1. In 1673, John Eaton inherited from his father, Jonas, a
farm with a house and barn where the mill at "Slab City"
lately stood. This was four years before the marriage of
Sergt. Nathaniel Parker who built the first house near the
in a field working with a son. He looked to-
wards his house and saw evidences of trouble;
when he reached the house, he found that In-
dians had murdered his wife, a son and an infant
A few months later, a son of George Abbot
of Andover was killed, two boys in Dracut were
carried away into Canada, captives. The towns
of Sudbury, Groton, Chelmsford and Dracut
were abandoned. Their inhabitants flocked to
Concord, Woburn, Reading and Boston
for safety and support.
The attack on the Harnden family in Read-
ing occurred many years later, but may be re-
lated here. Their homestead ;*was on Woburn
and High streets, opposite the present North
'Tn July, 1707, Col. Schuyler from his trad-
ing post in Albany notified Gov. Dudley that a
company of two hundred Indians and French
soldiers were on their way to the Piscataqua
River. They first showed themselves at Dun-
stable, then at Amesbury and Kingston. On the
8th, fiYt Indians in the edge of dusk attacked
the house of John Harnden in his absence. They
butchered his wife and the three youngest chil-
dren. The other five they carried off. One of
these, unable to keep up with the savages was
struck with a tomahawk and left for dead in an
adjoining swamp, where the child was found
afterwards alive. The people in the vicinity tak-
ing the alarm got together, and the next morn-
ing set out in pursuit. Coming upon their trail,
they pressed them so hard that they recaptured
three of the children; and so terrified were the
Indians that they dropped their plunder and the
remaining captive. After this success, the Read-
ing men returned to their houses, but once they
had retired, the savages swarmed to the west-
ward until they had startled the people of
Chelmsford, Sudbury and Groton. When in the
latter town, they waylaid three soldiers as they
were going to church, killing two and capturing
Sylvester s Indian Wars Vol. Ill, p. 93
THE FRENCH AND INDIAN WARS
About the year 1689, the French government
directed Count Frontenac to employ his Indian
allies in harrassing New England settlements.
It was the commencement of a desperate strug-
gle between two great nations for the possession
of America. Its fisheries, timber and furs were
inexhaustible sources of national wealth and
power. In these wars many Reading men took
In August, 1689, the Massachusetts Council
and Representatives ordered
"That six hundred men, horse and foot be
raised forthwith in Their Majesties Service for
the Suppression and Destruction of the Indian
Enemy." Eighty men from the Lower Middle-
sex Regiment were ordered to rendezvous at
Woburn under Capt. James Converse, Lieut.
Thomas Bancroft of Reading wias next in com-
mand. They were then ordered to what is no\v
the town of South Berwick, Maine. The IndiSah^
had attacked and massacred the inhabitants of
Wells, Exeter and Saco.
On August 28, Maj. Jeremiah Swayne was
placed in command of seven Massachusetts com-
panies and a party from the Plymouth Colony,
in an expedition to clear the border towns of
enemies as far East as Falmouth (Portland).
He was unable to surround the Indians, as
they retreated into the wilderness when attack-
ed : besides this, Indian scouts, sent out by Capt.
Wiswall, betrayed the plans of the white soldiers
during the week in which they treacherously
lived in the camps of the enemy. Notwithstand-
ing the fault found by his failure to meet the In-
dians, Cotton Mather speaks of him as our
''Honest Major Swayne."
He reported to the Council from Salmon
Falls as follows : ''Capt. Wiswiall with the big-
gest part of his company scouted up westward
into ye chestnut woods 4 dayes but found none
of ye enimy — it is supposed yt a small party of
Indians may be in ye chestnut country beyond
Oct. 15, 1689.
In 1690, New Ejngland resolved to attack
Canada. Sir William Phipps with a fleet
carrying two thousand men sailed up the St.
Lawrence; but the great delay before arriving
at Quebec made the attempt a total failure. The
chapel of Notre Dame des Victoires in the Low-
er City, under the great fortress towering far
above it, still remains to commemorate this
victory of the French army over the "Yankee
Several Reading men were in this expedition
Capt. Ephraim Savage^ in command of one of
the vessels was wounded. When Sir William at-
tempted to land soldiers at St. Charles in order
to divert Count Frontenac from the main attack
in front of the city, the general in charge report-
ed Oct. 7, ''we attempted to land soldiers but a
storm prevented and Capt. Savage's vessel
went ashore ; the tide fell and left them dry ; the
enemy came upon them but they manfully de-
fended themselves; the enemy were awed by
guns from Sir William, and at the tides coming
in they floated and all got off in safety." Among
the men in the Lower Middlesex regt. under
Maj. Nath'l Wade of Medford, were Lieut.
Nath'l Goodwin,^ Lieut. Jona. Poole, Jr.,^ Dr.
1. Capt. Ephraim Savage was very wealthy and a man of
great ability. He returned to Boston, Was a cousin of Chief
Justice Samuel Sewell.
2. Lieut. Goodwin lived on the east side of the Pond; was
a selectman for many years, also the town clerk and represen-
3. Lieut. Jonathan Poole, b. 1667, d. 1723 ; succeeded to the
homestead below the present Town Hall; was a selectman and
James Stimpson, ^ who died on his return, Daniel
Merrow^, a surgeon's mate, wounded, Richard
and WilHam Temple and Lieut. Abraham Bry-
ant,^ who built the Parker Tavern.
Cotton Mather in his MagnaHa relates the
following of Capt. Bancroft's part in the build-
ing of the fort at Pemaquid (Me.) in 1692.
"His Excellency, Sir William Phipps being
arrived now the Governor of New England, ap-
plied himself with all possible vigour to carry on
the war. He raised about 450 men and in pursu-
ance of his instructions from Whitehall, he laid
the foundations of a fort at Pemmaquid which
was the finest thing that had been seen in these
parts of America. Capt. Wing assisted with
Capt. Bancroft went through the former part of
the work and the latter part was finished by
1. Dr. Stimpson lived on Cowdrey's Hill. "This 24, July,
1690, I, James Stimpson, Sr., being bound for Canada upon
the Countrey's Service, do leave this my last will and testament.
If God's Providence so dispose that I, ye said James return
no more." From his will on file at Cambridge. His famil}^
were left in great want and had to ask the Court for help.
2. Daniel Merrow, b. 1662, a son-in-law of Dr. Stimpson,
and listed as a surgeon's mate, succeeded to his father's home-
stead on West St. south of the Bancroft farm. The house
was doubtless built before 1667 and perhaps was the first in
the "Wood End" of Reading.
3. Lieut. Abraham Bryant, b. 1671, d. 1714, married Sarah,
daughter of Capt. Thomas Bancroft, in 1693, and built the
Parker Tavern. His military service in Canada in 1690 was
proved by Isaac Baldwin.
"His Excellency attended in this matter with
these worthy Captains did in a few months dis-
patch a service for the King with a prudence,
and industry, and thriftiness, greater than any
reward they ever had for it.
''The fort called the William and Henry was
built of stone in a quadrangular figure, being;
about 7Z7 ft. in compass. There were laid abovfe
2000 cart loads of stone. It has eighteen guns,
mounted and it had generally at least sixty men
posted in it for its defense."
Cotton Mather also describes what he terms
"A Remarkable Experience of One of Lieut.
Thomas Bancroft's Soldiers while Fighting the
Indians at Exeter" The story may seem rather
trivial, but it is certainly interesting !
''On July 4, 1690, while eight white men were
gathering hay in a field near Lamphrey River,
they were set on by a large number of Indians
who slew them all and took a lad into captivity.
The next day they attacked Col. Hilton's garri-
son at Exeter. Lieut. Bancroft being stationed
in the town with a small force at a distance prob-
ably of three or four miles, relieved the garri-
son at a loss however of eight or nine of his
"It is true that one Simon Stone of Groton
here wounded with Shot in Nine several Places
lay for Dead (as it was time) among the Dead.
The Indians coming to strip him, attempted with
Two several Blows of an Hatchet at his neck to
cut off his head, which blows added you may be
sure, more enormous Wounds unto those Port-
holes of Death at which the Life of the poor man
was already running out as fast as it could. Be-
ing charged hard by Lieut. Bancroft they left
the man without Scalping him and the English
now coming to Bury the Dead one of the Sol-
diers perceived this poor man fetch a Gasp
whereupon a Rough Fellow then present ad-
vised 'em to give him another Dab with an
Hatchet and so Bury him with the rest.
"The English desisting this Barbarous advice
lifted up the Wounded man and poured a little
Fair Water into his Mouth at which he Cough-
ed ; then they poured a little Strong Water after
it, at which he opened his Eyes. The Rough
Fellow was ordered now to hale a Canoo ashore
to carry the Wounded Man up the River unto
a Chirurgeon: — Simon Stone was thoroughly
Cured and is at this Day a very Lusty Man;
and as he was born with Two Thumbs on one
hand, his Neighbors have thought him to have
at least as many Hearts as Thumbs."
On Oct. 16, 1696, Capt. James Converse of
Woburn reported to Lieut. Gov. Stoughton, "I
took with me Capt. Thomas Bancroft and came
to Groaton garrison on Friday morning."
On Feb. 16, 1707 "Capt. Thomas Nichols
sat at a court martial at Groaton.''
In 1707 Capt. Savage commanded a company
in Nova Scotia, and in 1711 while he and Capt.
Blims were sailing down from Annapolis, going
into Passamaquoddy Bay for water, once on
shore found themselves surrounded by a consid-
erable body of Indians, while some French in the
neighborhood remained passively looking on.
They were anxious to obtain a cargo and sent
Capt. Savage on board to bring some of the lad-
ing on shore ; which he was unable to do, as the
wind rising blew him off shore, so that he es-
caped to get to Boston. His companion was
Sylvester III, pp. 193-194
Under date of March 1711, is recorded the
death of Jonathan Eaton,^ at Annapolis Royal, N.
S. after 167 days service. Hananiah Parker, Jr.,^
1. Jonathan Eaton, b. 1686, son of Lieut. Jonathan and
grandson of Jonas and Grace.
2. Hananiah Parker, Jr., b. 1691 son of John, grandson of
Capt. John Parker who led the Lexington Minute Men
on April 19, 1775 was a grandson of the John mentioned above.
also died at Port Royal in 1711. Under Lieut.
Wheelwright there were Lieut. Benj. Poole^ and
Sergt. James Poole. In 1722 under Capt. Ed-
mund Ward of Scarborough were Lieut. Timo-
thy Goodwin^ and Gersham Proctor. Under
Capt. Eleazer Lyng of Dunstable was Ebenezer
Nichols,^ a centinal and in 1724 a sergeant.
Under Capt. Joseph Blanchard at Dunstable
from Aug. 26 to Oct. 29, 1725 were the follow-
ing Reading men: —
Thomas Bancroft ^ 3rd Ebenezer Damon^
Thomas Eaton^ (and servant) John Temple^
Joseph Arnold Abraham Foster'^
Edward Chamberlain Ebenezer Nichols
1. Benj. Poole, b. 1694, son of Esq. Jonathan.
2. Lieut. Timothy Goodwin, probably a son of Lieut. Na-
3. Ebenezer Nichols, b. 1703, d. Merrimack, N. H., 1777. Son
of James before noted. Bought Parker Tavern in 1738. In the
army several years until 1760. Was a selectman and a repre-
sentative for many terms, a justice also.
4. Thomas Bancroft 3rd. 1673-1731. His homestead on
West St. ; is now owned by Dr. Cheng. Was a selectman and
5. Thomas Eaton, 1685-1774. Succeeded his father Joshua
on the Prescott farm, Summer Ave. ; owned 325 acres ; was a
6. John Temple, b. 1704, d. 1776. Son and successor of
Richard; was a selectman and member of the Provincial Con-
gress of 1774 and 1775 that upheld the charter rights of the
7. Abraham Foster, b 1702, bought the mill at "Slab City"
of John Eaton, who inherited a house, barn and farm on the
"Playne" from his father, Jonas Eaton in 1673.
8. Ebenezer Damon, b. 1686 son of Sam'l.
John Boutwell^ Thomas Damon^
Benj. Burnap^ Joseph Bancroft^
Sam'l Lamson^ Ebenezer Pearson
In the same year, 1725, under Capt. Eleazer
Tyng for 14 weeks were : —
Sergt. Benj. Nichols^ John Poole^
Sergt. Sam'l Harnden^ William Proyt
Jonathan Pearson Edward Pratt^^
1. John Boutwell, b. 1702. Son of John and Grace (Eaton)
This Boutwell family settled on the Dana Parker place where
the park and portion of the Cemetery are.
2. Thomas Damon, b. 1703, son of Thomas.
3. Benj. Burnap, b. 1702, son of Benj. and Eliz. (Newhall).
4. Samuel Lam.son, b. 1701, lived near the corner of Pearl
and Salem Sts.
5. Samuel Hartshorn, b. 1708, son of Timothy and Martha.
6. Joseph Bancroft, b. 1698. Son of Thomas 3rd. Father
and son on the same Roll, in the same company.
7. Sergt. Benjamin Nichols, b. 1699, son of John, who lived
on Pearl St. near the present Main St.
8. Sergt. Samuel Harnden, 1699, son of Benjamin. The
early Harnden families in the north western part of Read-
ing, now Wilmington.
9. John Poole, b. 1688. Succeeded his father, Lieut. John
on the homestead north of the Pond. This included the Caleb
Wakefield, the Benj. Cox farms and Camp Curtis Guild.
10. Edward Pratt, b. 1770, son of John who lived on the
place owned by Lucius Beebe, Esq.
The Capture Of Louisburg
In 1745, Gov. Shirley of Massachusetts and
William Pepperill, a wealthy merchant of Kit-
tery, raised a large body of soldiers and with the
aid of a fleet of English war vessels, after a
desperate siege, captured the French fortress
of Louisburg, Cape Briton Island, which had
been a constant menace to the cities of the New
England coast. General Pepperill was knighted
as a reward for his services.
Ebenezer Nichols was captain of the 9th Co. ;
under Col. Sylvanus Richmond of the Sixth
Regt. ; Jonathan^ and Joshua Parker^ were ser-
geants. In the Third Regt. Jonathan Hartshorn^
was a lieutenant of the 8th Co. Under Lieut.
Scollay was Edmund Pi'att an ensign. John
Batt^ and John Jeffrey died on their return. Ab-
raham and Frink Bryant, brothers, Sudbury,
age 22 and 28 years, died at Louisburg, Feb.
1746. They were grandsons of Lieut. Abraham
and Sarah (Bancroft) Bryant, the first owners
of Parker Tavern.
1. Jonathan Parker, b. 1709 son of Jona. and Ann (North
2. Joshua Parker, b. 1720, son of Eben, of CTiarlestown.
3. Jonathan Hartshorn, 1721, son of Benj. and EHz. (Bout-
4. John Batt married Ruth Lamson, Reading 1731.
THE LAST FRENCH AND INDIAN WAR
A journal of Josiah Walton, Jr., of Reading,
bound for Crown Point with Major Ebenezer
A^. E, Register, Vol. V, p. 42
June ye 30, 17S?5
"I went with Major Nichols bound for
Crown Poynt. Monday from Reading to Wo-
burn; Tuesday from there through Bedford,
Concord, Sudbury, Westboro to Worcester; on
Wednesday from there through Leister, and
Brookfield to Palmer ; Thursday through Spring-
field and Westfield to Glascow; Friday through
part of No. 1 to Sheffield; Saturday through
Kinderhook to the Half- Way Brook. Sunday,
July 6, we went to Albany. We went up the
river (Hudson) from the 6th of Aug. till the
14th, when we arrived at the carrying place.
Sept. 4, w^e got to Lake George. Sept. 8 there
was a scout of seven hundred men which met an
army of French and Indians which beat us back
to the camp and there fought for some hours.
The fight began four miles from camp.
I was dismissed at Lake George Oct. 4; got
to Albany the 7th; went on board of Capt.
Clapp's sloop which sailed that day for Boston
where we arrived Oct. ye 21, and got home ye
Col. Titcomb was killed in the battle men-
tioned and Maj. Nichols was fwounded. He later
became the colonel of this regiment.
Muster Roll of Capt. John TapHn's Co. un-
der Major Nichols on the Crown Point Expedi-
tion from Mar. 28 to Dec. 12, 1755.
Archives, Vol. 94, p. 36.
Lieut. Benj. Flint Thomas Brown
Sergt. Nathan Walton Timothy Bryant
Sergt. Josiah Fay Sam'l Hartshorn, Jr.
Corp. Wm. Gould Asa Kendall
Cornet, John Dix John Kendall
Cornet, John Boutwell Sam'l Smith
Ebenezer Going Kendall Flint
Jonathan Eaton Josiah Walton, Jr.
Benj, Flint, b. 1728, son of Dea. Wm. whose homestead
half a mile south of village of North Reading.
Nathan Walton, b. 1729, son of John who probably came
Wm. Gould, bap. 1726, son of Major "Gold" of Topsfield.
John Dix was a lieut. in the North Reading Co. April 19,
John Boutwell, b. 1739, son of Nathaniel.
Eben "Going", b. 1733, son of Ebenezer Gowing.
Jona. Eaton, b. 1735, son of Jona. who lived on Ash st.
Thos. Brown, b. 1738, son of Jeremiah.
Sam'l Hartshorn Jr., b. 1735, son of Sam'l.
Asa Kendall of Dunstable, married in Reading in 1759.
Sam'l Smith, b. 1727, son of Isaac.
Kendall Flint, b. 1733, son of Dea. Wm., bro. of Lieut. Benj.
Josiah Walton, b. 1736 "the diarist", bro. of Nathan moved
to N. H.. was in the Battle of Bunker Hill.
Under Maj. Nichols and Capt. William Flint
at Ft. Edwards, July, 1756, were Jonathan Mac-
Kintier, clerk, Joseph Gilbert, age 46 and Wil-
liam Shelden, age 16. Transferred from Capt.
Goodwin's Co. were Sergt. Hugh Lynde, Jona-
than Eaton, age 27 and John Emery, age 20.'
Under Capt. Tapley, Ft. William Henry,
Aug. 1756: Sergt. Benj. Parker, died, age 27,
Thomas Eaton, Jona. Foster, age 19, Richard
Mellendy, age 33, Harran Rand, age 16, Timo-
thy Stimpson, Josiah Atwood, Jacob Upton.
Archives Vol. 93, p. 196
A Return by Capt. Ebenezer Jones, Sept. 22,
1755 to Feb. 1, 1756.
''A Hst of ye mens names Coining ye Expidi-
tion against Crowyne Pynt which belongs to ye
Regement whereof Elaser Tyng Esq. is Col.
presented to me to be vewed and to pass muster
Joseph Flint Isaac Walton, drummer
Jona Eaton, b. 1728, son of Nath'l lived near Prospect and
Brook Sts., Wakefield.
Benj. Parker, b. 1727, son of Benj. their homestead 370
Franklin St. now standing.
Jona. Foster, b. 1737, son of Jona.; his homestead now
owned by the Meadow Brook Club.
Timothy Stimpson, b. 1714, son of Dr. Thomas.
Jacob Upton, b. 1726, son of Joseph.
Joseph Flint, 1737, son of Ensign Thomas.
Isaac Walton, b. 1733 son of John and Mary.
John Brown Kendall Goodwin, corporal
Thomas Rayner William Coggin, wounded
Lemuell Jenkin Jeremiah Bryant, Jr. cornet
Joshua Eaton, clerk Joshua Parker
Didemus Nichols Greene Parker
Stephen Knight Ebenezer Parker
Taken from the militia in the summer of
1757 for the Relief of Ft. William Henry, — la
Troop of Horse under Capt. Samuel Bancroft,
Jr., Reading to Brookfield, 68 miles, 11 day's
wages. If 10 S.
Lieut. Jabez Temple Phineas Parker, Jr.
Phineas ly'ovejoy Samuel Smith
John Brown, b. 1733, son of Nathaniel.
Lemuel Jenkin married Sarah Weston of Reading, 1757.
Joshua Eaton, b 1734, son of Capt. Thos., Sr. ; lived at
corner of Summer Ave. and Oak St.
Didemus Nichols, b. 1734, son of Daniel.
Stephen Knight married Mary Pierce of Reading, 1753.
Kendall Goodwin, b. 1736, son of John.
Wm. Coggin, b. 1742, son of Joseph.
Jeremiah Bryant, b. 1742, son of Jeremiah.
Ebenezer Parker, b. 1723; Greene Parker, b. 1736; Joshua
Parker, b. 1738, brothers, sons of Ebenezer, homestead in
Capt. Sam'l Bancroft Jr., b. 1715, son of Capt. Sam'l, home-
stead on West St., near Woburn line.
Jabez Temple, b. 1731. In 1790 bought north half of "Park-
er Tavern" and 20 acres west and south of the barn; sold in
1802 to Jona Weston," reserving rights to 2nd and 3rd loft."
Phineas Parker, Jr., b. 1739. In 1728 his father, Phineas
Sr., inherited the homestead of Ens. Nathaniel, near the pre-
sent post office with the land extending from Lowell to Wash-
ington Sts. ; Phineas Sr, years later built the Grouard house
where the Library now stands,
Sam'l Smith, b. 1727, son of Isaac who lived on Main
St., near Crescent St. Wakefield.
Under Capt. David Greene, Reading, in a Hke
Sergt. Joshua Nichols
Ephraim Parker, b. 1728, son of Joseph of Franklin St.,
owned "Parker Tavern".
Benj. Nichols, b. 1723, son of Joseph.
Joseph Nichols, b. 1728, son of Joseph.
Joseph Bancroft, b. 1735, son of Ens. Thos., West St., the
farm later owned by his grandson, Capt. George.
Jonathan Weston, b. 1731, son of Ephraim, lived on the
farm later owned by Jona. Moulton, Main St., near Stoneham
Jacob Townsend, b. 1729, West St., near the Wilmington
Nath'l Cowdrey, b. 1737, son of Nath'l of Prospect St.,
Joseph Felch, b. 1736, son of Ebenezer lived near the Stone-
Capt. David Greene, b. 1714, son of David ; lived in Green-
wood near Stoneham line.
Joshua Nichols, b. 1718, son of Richard; homestead at
corner of FrankHn and Grove Sts.
James Hartshorn, b. 1730, son of John.
Benj. Bachelor, b. 1736, son of Jonathan.
Abraham Foster, b. 1735, son of Abraham who owned the
mill at "Slab City".
John Emerson a|c Brown Emerson
Timothy Bryant a|c Peter Emerson
John Boutwell, Jr. a|c John Boutwell
Dan'l Gardner a|c Benj. Brown
Jas. Williams a|c Jona. Pierson
Michael Sweetser a|c Jas. Emerson
A Muster Roll of Capt. Jonathan Eaton's
Troop of Horse, detached from Col Tyng's
Regt. for the Relief of Ft. WilHam Henry v —
Lieut. Jonathan Jaquith Timothy Nichols, Jr.
Q. M. James Weston John Weston
Corp. Jona. Bryant Ebenezer Beard
Corp. Jabez Damon William Bryant, Jr.
Peter Emerson Thomas Eaton
Green Parker, b. 1736, son of Ebenezer.
John Emerson, b. 1732, son of Brown.
John Boutwell Jr., b. 1739, son of John; homestead in-
cluded Salem St. Playground.
Michael Sweetser, b. 1735, son of Michael; homestead on
Main St.; near the "Junction".
Capt. Jonathan Eaton, b. 1714, son of Capt. Thos. St.; Ash
St. near Wakefield line.
James Weston, b. 1733, son of Benjamin, who lived on
Jona. Bryant, b. 1717, son of Esq. Wm. and grandson of
Jabez Damon, b. 1722, son of Joseph.
Peter Emerson, b. 1726, son of Brown,
Timothy Nichols, b. 1731, son of Timothy.
John Weston, b. 1731, son of Isaac who lived on West St.
William Bryant, b. 1735, son of Wm. Jr., who removed to
Thomas Eaton, Jr., b. 1729 was Capt. of Reading Co. 1775;
son of Capt. Thos. Sr.
Under Capt. Thomas Flint, from the North
Parish to Marlboro 32 miles Aug. 1757.
Archives, Vol. 95, p. 501.
Lieut. Wm. Manning Ephraim Pratt
Sergt. Abr. Shelding Jonathan Dix
Sergt. Abr. Stickney John Buxton
Corp. James FHnt Bben. MacKinter
William Sawyer Timothy MacKinter
Timothy Russell Timothy Eaton
N. Hampton, June 2, 17S8
To Lieut. Eph. Wesson,
You are to repair to Hadley and there wait
for Col. Nichols' arrival that you may give him
an Acct. .of the spare blankets of the Regiment
that were left there at Mr. Oliver Smith's.
I am your friend,
Green s Groton
Abraham Shelding, b. 1740, son of Abraham Sheldon.
James Flint, b. 1724, son of Dea. Wm., who lived a half
mile south of the village.
Wm. Sawyer, b. 1730, son of William.
Timothy Russell, b. 1733, son of Robert.
Benj. MacKinter, b. 1725, son of Sam'l.
Ephraim Pratt, b. 1729, son of Sam'l who lived near Her-
rick Batchelor's place.
Jona. Dix, b. 1738, son of Samuel Dix.
Timothy Eaton, b. 1736, son of Israel and Diadem.
Under Capt. Aaron Fay of Southboro, on an
Expedition to Crown Point, Apr. 21 to Nov. 2,
1759 was Corp. Asa Parker; and in 1760, for 4
weeks, 1 day; allowed 98 miles travel home to
Reading; also James Bryant.
Under Col. Nichols, Sept. 13, 1758 to Jan. 4,
1759 was Daniel FHnt, killed.
Under Col. Williams from June 26 to Dec.
2, 1760 was Ebenezer Flint.
Under Capt. Moses Parker, Chelmsford
from May 2, 1761 to Jan. 21, 1762 was Nath'l
Parker, Reading, and under Capt. Thos. Far-
rington from Mar. 18 to Nov. 17, 1762 was
Nath'l Parker of Reading a "minor," T. Emer-
In Capt. Hezekiah Upton's 3rd Reading Co.
was Lieut. Eliezer Flint, Mar. 1762 and Sergt.
Jos. Flint in Capt. Francis Peabody's Co. from
June 26, 1760 to Apr. 15, 1761. These two Flint
Asa Parker, b. 1740, son of Benj.; succeeded his father-in
-law on Franklin and Grove Sts. Was grandfather of Harri-
son of Winchester; Oilman and Loea of Reading and Asa of
Brooklyn, N. Y.
James Bryant, b. 1719, son of Kendall, grandson of Sergt.
Daniel Flint, b. 1740; Eben'r Flint, b. 1742, sons of Ebe-
Nath'l Parker, son of Capt. Nathan ; he was a physician in
Capt. Hesekiah Upton, b. 1725, son of Joseph.
Eliezer Flint, b. 1731, Joseph Flint, brothers and grandsons
of Sergt. George whose garrison house still stands, Park St.,
West, North Reading.
brothers were in Sudbury at Jona. Rice's Inn
for 16 weeks. They were probably sick there.
Before this last war was declared, the fol-
lowing named Reading men were employed in
the defense of the eastern frontier under Col.
Winslow: Nov. 1754. Thos. Richardson, sergt
and Wm. Stimpson, clerk, 3 mo. 2 weeks, 6 days.
Capt. Thos. Flint Apr. 23 to Oct. 9, 1754.
Under Capt. Thos. Flint, May 31 to Sept. 9,
Corp. Benj. Parker and Young Flint, master
From a Diary of Lieut. Samuel Thompson, in Col.
Nichols^ Regt., Capt. Ebenezer Jones Co., near Lake George
— In the Woburn Public Library.
"On July 20, 1758 occurred one of the many
skirmishes for which Half Way Brook is noted
(Queenesbury, N. Y.) One of the scouting par-
ties sent out by Gen. Montcalm to attack and
harrass the soldiers and convoys on the Ft. Ed-
wards road, and to take scalps and provisions,
made one of their hawk-like descents, falling
upon Col. Nichols regiment then quartered at
the Half Way Brook. The detachment made up
of 500 Canadians and Indians succeeded in tak-
William Stimpson, b. 1732, son of Dr. Wm, and Catherine,
dau. of Col. Ebenezer Nichols. They lived at the corner of
Main and Salem Sts., Wakefield.
ing twenty-four scalps and ten prisoners. Capt.
Jones of Wilmington, Capt. Lawrence of Gro-
ton and twelve others were brought into camp
"On July 27 there was another ambush; Gen.
Putnam's convoy of sixty baggage carts halted
at night at Half Way Brook. They resumed'
their march the next morning before their es-
cort had left the enclosure. They were attacked
by a large party of French and Indians, and
over one hundred of the escort killed. Gen. Piit-
nam was made a prisoner."
The capture of Quebec, Sept. 17, 1759 by
General Wolfe ended all hope on the part of
France, of conquering New England. It also
stopped the Indian massacres that had terrified
the English settlements for nearly a century.
These wars had imposed heavy burdens on
the early settlers."^ In two years during King
Philip's Wars, seventeen county rates were as-
sessed upon Massachusetts towns. In some in-
stances, these taxes exceeded the total valuation.
A single rate of Reading was 16£ 9s lid. The
*Houses in Reading in 1667, 59; Soldiers here listed in
Philip's War 1675, 38.
*Houses in Reading in 1765, 225; Soldiers listed in last
French and Indian War, 1755-60, 106.
demand upon the militia was also very severe. It
is probable that in King Philip's War of 1675-77
and in the last French and Indian War of 1755-
'60 there was a soldier in the army from every
two houses. These men not only endured the
hardships and dangers common to all army life,
but in addition, the horrors of Indian savagery,
such as scalping, mutilation and torture. The
musty petitions in the State Archives reveal not
only the desperate poverty of some of their be-
reaved families, but display also a fortitude and
devotion worthy of heroes and patriots.
Notwithstanding the devastation wrought
during nearly a century of border warfare the
indomitable spirit of the hardy settlers was
such that their eastern frontier, which in King
Philip's War had been at Casco Bay, had at the
close of the French and Indian Wars, been ad-
vanced nearly to the Penobscot River.
Their fortitude should be an everlasting ex-
ample and inspiration to New England people.
995 00118 7255