Wednesday, September 25, 2013

'WELL BELOVED' Samuel Blodgett, Sr. (1633-1720) Child Immigrant

DART-WHITNEY/Blodgett through child immigrant (1635)Samuel Sr. & Ruth Eggleton, Samuel Jr. & Hulda Simonds (daughter of Judith Phippen-Hayward, Indentured Servant), William & Sarah Hall, their daughter Amy & Joshua Whitney to Lucy who married Jonathan Dart.


 from Will of his father, Thomas Blodgett
"I Thomas Bloggett being at this time in my right mind, give to wife Susan my whole estate after my decease, as well within doors as without. She to bring vp my children in such learning & other things as is meete for them, & pay oldest son Daniel 15 pounds when one & twenty or in one month after her decease. To my 2d son Samuel 15 pounds, as above. To daughter Susanna 15 pounds. Should they have a father-in-law who does not treat them well my will is that the Deacons & our brother ffessington & our brother Edward Winchship, they or either of them should have power to see unto it & reforme it by one meanes or other. Written this 10th day of the 6th month 1641.  In presence of us Hereunto I set my hand."
possibly a namesake descendant
(From Dawes-Gates Ancestral Lines, Mary Walton Ferris, 1943 pages 92-94)
"Samuel Blodgett (Thomas) was born in England about 1633, was brought to Cambridge in infancy, (on the Increase in 1635) and at the age of about eleven, after his father's death, was taken to the Thompson home in Woburn where he grew to manhood, and in this town he lived until his death, on May 21, 1720, when he was recorded as Samuel, "senior" and was nearly eighty-seven. He married there on December 13, 1655, Ruth Eggleton, who died at Woburn on October 14, 1703.
Samuel must have acquired church membership and freemanship since he held various official positions culminating in that of deputy to the General Court in 1693. He had served the town locally as selectman in 1681, 1690-1, 1693, 1695-7 and 1703 and as commissioner "on the rate" (tax) in 1692. After the Indians killed John Nutting, husband of Sarah (Eggleton) sister of Ruth, Sarah came to Woburn to live with Ruth and Samuel Blodgett.

During the life of Samuel, and for many years beyond, Woburn and other early town experienced much of discontent and controversy over the various bridges in the colony. As early as 1648 the General Court had passed an order laying the expense of building and of repairing bridges, on the township within whole limits they stood. This was highly unsatisfactory for frequently the need and use of a given bridge would be greater by the residents of a more remote town (which was not on a water course, and consequently had no such expense) than by the near-by town which built and maintained it, so in 1655 that order was repealed and for a period of years bridge repairs were assessed not on one town alone, or indeed in a given county, but were apportioned among a number of towns which might at times use the bridge, or who business might profit because settlers from outlying sections used it.

*Cradock Bridge est.1638, Medford, MA
The bridge* over which Woburn had become so irritated crossed the Mystic River at Medford and in October, 1676, at a Woburn town meeting the selectmen were directed to ask the General Court to grant them "some case of their burden at Mistick Bridge." No such relief was obtained and subsequently repairs were neglected to such an extent that in 1675 Woburn was "presented" to the Court for the inattention and thereafter the town submitted to the inevitable until 1690. In October of that year the selectmen of Woburn, Reading and Malden joined in another petition to the Court and continued their pleas and protests through 1693. However, Woburn voters had demanded as early as 1691 that their selectmen "withstand (refrain from) - allowing anything more to the repairing of Mistick Bridge" assuring them that if it became necessary to go to the law about it, the town would pay the costs: and seemingly the officials refrained from making repairs until in December, 1693, the selectmen were ordered to send representatives to court on the 26th of that month to answer for this neglect. As a consequence, Samuel Blodgett, one of the selectmen, and Maj. James Converse appeared before the court and according to the instructions of their townsmen airily made answer "that Woburne was not concerned in the presentment of Mistick Bridge: neither would they do anything in order to the repairing thereof, except by Law they were forced thereto: and that they referred themselves to the law in that case: and so left the case for that time". If this move was intended to make a definite issue of the case it was successful, for the bold defiance only brought the command that representatives of the town should appear before an adjourned meeting of the court less than a month hence on January 23, 1693-4, reporting that the repairs had been made, or the town would be fine 5 pounds. This caused a ferment in the town and though Samuel Blodgett seems to have had no further official connection with the case, his personal feelings probably were disturbed for the rest of his life, for this conflict was carried on intermittently until 1761 when Medford agreed to accept a payment of 200 pounds from Woburn to free her, permanently, from further obligation.

view toward Boston from Rag Rock 1863
In 1671 Samuel had land laid out to him near Rag Rock by a neighbor William Locke, in 1672 they joined in buying thirty-seven acres in Woburn from William Johnson..."

from Will of stepfather James Thompson:
“…Lastly, --I do nominate and appoint my son Jonathan [who married Samuel’s sister, Susannah, both of whom grew up in his household] to be the sole Executor of this my whole will, and desire and ordeyne my Trustee and well beloved ffriends, Samuel Bloggett senr and John Mousall to be ovrseers of this my last will and Testament, 
and as a pledge of my love, I give to said Bloggett Mr. Rogers his book, and Mousall a payr of new Gloves.“In witness whereof I have hereunto sett (this last day of ffebruary in the year of our Lord, one thousand six hundred and eighty and one) my hand and seal.”

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