Thomas HOWES (1601 – 1665) was Alex’s 10th Great Grandfather; one of 2,048 in this generation.
Thomas Howes was born in Jan 1600/01 in Norfolk, England. An early Howes genealogy by JC Howes gives a long history of the family in Morningthorpe, Norfolk, England, but this has since been proven inaccurate. He married Mary BURR in England. Thomas, Mary, and their family of three sons – Joseph (1630), Thomas (1634), and Jeremiah (1637), landed at Salem, MA from England about 1637, and moved to Yarmouth (now Dennis) Cape Cod about 1638 to farm the land granted by the King’s Governor. Thomas died 26 Sep 1665 in Dennis, Massachusetts.
The pictured monument above was erected upon a millstone at the Howes Cemetery in 1834 to mark the resting place of Thomas and Mary (Burr) Howes.
Mary Burr was born ca. 1615 in England. After Thomas died, she married our ancestor Gov. Thomas PRENCE between Feb 26 1665/6 and Aug 1 1668 as his fourth wife. Thomas and Mary’s son married Prence’s daughter Sarah, so the families were closely connected. Mary died 9 Dec 1695 in Yarmouth, Mass. and is buried at Howes Burial Ground, Dennis, Barnstable, Massachusetts.
Children of Thomas and Mary
|19 Jan 1694/95 Yarmouth|
|2.||Capt Thomas Howes||1636
|Sarah Bangs (daughter of Edward BANGS)
|20 Nov 1676
|3.||Jeremiah HOWES||1637 at sea on journey to America||Sarah PRENCE
|9 Sep 1708
|4.||Hannah Howes||ca. 1641
|11 Feb 1710/11
Yarmouth, Barnstable, Mass
|6.||Elizabeth Howes||ca. 1643
28 Apr 1665
|6.||Benjamin Howes||ca. Nov 1654
The Howes family record goes back to 1066 when John de Huse received a grant of manor in Berkshire. John Howys was decended from him in unbroken line. Thae family seat was then Besthorpe in Norfolk County (1457). A decendant, Thomas, married Tabitha Roope, of Morningthorpe Manor, which has since been the seat of the Howes family in England
Thomas Howes married Mary Burr, and came from Norfolk, England. Thomas and his wife were in Salem in 1637, where they first landed. They brought with them 3 sons, Joseph, Thomas, and Jeremiah. Joseph went on to marry Rev. John Mayo’s daughter, Elizabeth Mayo. They lived in the Nobscusset area of Yarmouth, Plymouth colony, in present day Dennis. Jeremiah was the last born on the passage over to America. There is evidence that they lived in Lynn, Mass. at some point before coming to Cape Cod to permanently settle. They lived in the vicinity of Beach Street and New Boston Road in present day Dennis. – Jean Mayo-Lakatos
Thomas became a freeman in Yarmouth, Mass on 18 Dec 1638. In addition to being a planter, he was a cooper and taught the trade to his grandson Samuel.
Thomas, along with Anthony Thacher and John Crow, founded the town of Yarmouth. They were authorized to settle there permanently in early 1639. The area where Thomas settled later became the town of Dennis.
In 1648 Pilgrim Myles Standish was sent to settle a land dispute in Yarmouth. Other settlers felt the land division was unfair and that Howes, Thacher and Crow gave themselves too much land. Thomas had taken up 100 acres of upland and 20 acres of meadow. Around the same time, Indian Sachem Janno complained he was not paid for the land purchased by Thacher and Howes. The Sachem was compensated and Thomas later purchased more land from him.
In Yarmouth he served on the committee to divide planting lands in the first division, served as constable in 1644, on the council of war in 1658, was a frequent deputy to colony court, and was appointed to “reserve the oil of the country” for Yarmouth (the government claimed a portion of whale products that came ashore within the colony). He was once fined for not attending court, but the fine was remitted when he had valid excuse.
5 Mar 1638/39 – Thomas was on the commission of division in 1639. – The Colony Court ordered the Committee of the town of Yarmouth, consisting of Mr. Anthony Thacher, Mr. Thomas HOWES, Mr. John Crowe, Mr. Nicholas Sympkins, William Palmer, Philip Tabor and Joshua Barnes, to make the first division of the planting lands, to be divided equally “to each man according to his estate and quality, and according to their instructions.” Thacher, Howes and Crowe, had surveyed the lands during the previous winter, and it appears that Andrew HALLETT Sr. was also in Yarmouth, and had “assumed to himself” more land than was thought equitable, and the Colony Court appointed March 5, 1638/39, Joshua Pratt, of Plymouth, and Mr. John VINCENT of Sandwich, to view the lands, “and make report thereof unto the Court, that if these proportions which Mr. Andrew Hellott hath assumed to himself there shall be so p’judiciall to the whole, that then some just and equall order be taken therein, to prevent the evil consequences it may be to the whole plantation.”
No report of the committee is on record, and it would appear from the subsequent action of the Court that Mr. Hallett had not “assumed to himself” a greater proportion of the planting lands than he had a right to claim.
“Note as to Howes. The “Genealogy of the Howes Family” (1892), by Joshua C. Howes, gives the name of the wife of Thomas1 Howes as Mary Burr,(b) but no proof of her surname can be found. Mr. Howes says that the emigrant came from the County of Norfolk, England, but here again there is no proof that the emigrant had any connection with the Norfolk family or was entitled to the coat of arms given in the book. Burke’s General Armory, 513, gives the arms of Howes or Howse (Morningthorpe,Co. Norfolk), without indication of date, from which those in this book of J. C. Howes are taken, but Burke gives two different sets of arms without indication of place or date, and also gives the arms of Joan Howes, heiress of the family in the time of Henry VIII, Co, Essex. He also gives different sets of arms for various families named Hughes, Hugh, Hewes and for others having similar names. At the time of the emigration of Thomas1 Howes the name was not uncommon in various parts of England.
The author also says (p. 7) that “they [Thomas1 and his wife] were in Salem, Mass., two years before, or in 1637, where they first landed. They brought with them three sons, Joseph, Thomas and Jeremiah, the last born on the passage over, or soon after arrival.” There is no evidence that they had lived in Salem. There is evidence that they had lived in Lynn. The date and place of their arrival in America nowhere appear. They may have landed in Boston or Salem and in view of the litigation he was engaged in in 1638, no doubt as early as 1637. Jeremiah was born about 1637, but whether in England, on the passage over or in America is not known. There is no proof of the age of Thomas1 Howes at his death. This genealogy by J. C. Howes contains many errors and is imperfect. He appears not to have consulted the Barnstable Probate Records, only a few miles away from him. I have not relied on him except in a few instances where other authority was lacking.” – Thomas Howes genealogy, 1917
The permanent and authorized settlement of the town of Yarmouth commenced early in 1639. The grantees of the court were, Mr. Anthony Thacher, Mr. John Crow, Mr. Thomas HOWES , each of whom had taken the oath of allegiance the December and January preceding, and had surveyed the lands, preparatory to occupation. They, with John Coite, “to be inquired of,” Mr. Madrick Matthews, Philip Tabor, William Palmer, Samuel Rider, Wm. Lumpkin and Thomas Hatch, were proposed, 7th Jan. 1639, ” to take up their freedom at Yarmouth.” The same page records the following “persons there excepted against : Old Worden, (dead,) Burnell, Wright, Wat Deville.” In March following, Mr. Nicholas Simpkins, Hugh Tilley, Giles Hopkins and Joshua Barnes are mentioned in the court records as of Yarmouth.
The first mention of the name of Yarmouth, as applied to this township, is found in the court record of January, 1639, in connection with the grant to Thacher, Howes and Crow, From the fact that this name was selected, it has been inferred that the settlers of this town came from Yarmouth, in England. This may have been true of some individual, but does not apply to the settlers as a body. They did not come from any single locality. Some were Eastern County men, some were from the Midland Counties, some from Wales, and others from the South of England. Yarmouth, the principal seaport on the eastern coast of England, was the place of embarkation and debarkation between that country and Holland, and was naturally associated in the minds of the Pilgrims with their experiences in the mother country. Hence, perhaps, the name.
Thomas was a Constable in 1644, and of the Council of War in 1658. He was frequently one of the Deputies to the Colony Court, but was evidently disinclined to public service. Mr. Howes was once fined for not attending Court, but the fine was remitted, he presenting a valid excuse.
Janno, an Indian sachem, having complained that lands belonging to him in Yarmouth which were purchased by Mr. Thacher and Mr. Howes had not been paid for, Mr. John Alden and Lieutenant Southworth were appointed to settle the controversy. The result is embodied in the following documents :
” A writing appointed to be recorded : Whereas there hath been some unhappy differences between the town of Yarmouth and their committees, concerning some lands which they apprehended were formerly purchased of Janno, but through some neglect of theirs in not paying of the Indian for the said lands, have been of late denied by him to be sold, and the possessors molested; Mr. John Alden (wiki) and Capt. Josias Winslow (wiki) being ordered by the court to hear, and if it might be, determine such differences as were either between the English before mentioned or between the committees and the Indians, the town of Yarmouth having made choice of Mr. Edmund HAWES, Robert Dennis, Ed. Sturges [Edward STURGIS], and Thomas Boardman, and empowered them to manage and issue their aforesaid differences, there being propositions made on both sides tending to a composure, yet they not fully closing their propositions, but referring it, by mutual agreement, to the abovesaid Mr. John Alden and Capt. Josias Winslow as umpires, to determine between them about the premises : We the abovesaid John Alden and Josias Winslow do determine as followeth, viz: That the charge of the purchase, as now agreed upon between us and Jano, shall be equally borne between the said committees and the town ; and further, that the other six pounds, which is charges that the town have been at about this business, shall be four pounds of it borne by the town, and by Mr. Anthony Thatcher and Mr. Howes, twenty shillings apiece, and of this latter six pounds, old Mr. Crow to be excused ; and that this be a final end of all differences about the premises.
May 14th, 1668. John Alden, Josias Winslow.”
Another document is as follows : “May, Anno Dom., 1658.
Witnesseth these presents, that Janno hath, the day and year above written, for and in consideration of six coats, six pairs of small breeches, ten hoes, ten hatchets, two brass kettles, the one of six spans, and the other of seven, of Joanno’s aforesaid spans, and one iron kettle of six spans, to be paid to him, Joanno, or his assignees, the one half moiety, by the first of August next ensuing the date hereof, and the other half moiety by the middle of May, which shall be in the year of our Lord, 1659, bargained, sold, and confirmed unto Mr. John Alden and Josias Winslow, in the behalf of the townsmen of Yarmouth,
all that tract and tracts of land, both uplands and meadows, lying and being between the Bass Pond River and a river called by an Indian name Tamahappasouakou, by the English the Fresh River, and so along that river to the great swamp at the head thereof, and from the westermost end of the said swamp on a straight line through the land into Stoney Cove River, with all the profits. perquisites, and appurtenances thereunto or to any part or parcel thereof in any wise belonging,
to have and to hold the said tracts of land to the town of Yarmouth forever, and defend and save harmless from time to time the said townsmen of Yarmouth, and every of them, of and fron: all titles, claims, and molestations which shall be made by any Indian or Indians to the said tract of land, or any part or parcel of the same, at any time hereafter. In testimony whereof the said Joanno hereunto hath set his mark.
“The mark X of the said Joanno.
” In presence of Thomas Dexter,
The mark of [ — ] Josias, an Indian,
The mark of Nick ;^, an Indian.”
A list of Freemen of Yarmouth taken about in 1659 , comprises the following names :
Mr. Anthony Thacher, Samuel Arnold,
James Matthews, Thos. Falland [Thomas FOLLAND],
Mr. John Crow, Richard Sears,
Mr. Edmund HAWES, Richard Hoar,
Mr. Thos. HOWES, Mr. Yelverton Crow,
Edward STURGES, Emanuel White,
Mr. John Miller, Joseph Howes.
Cape Code Library of Local History and Genealogy, Vol I
In 1665, to settle the difficulty at Monomoy, now Chatham between William Nickerson and the Colonial government respecting the illegal purchase of land of the Indian sachem there, Nickerson was allowed one hundred acres of the purchased land, and Major John FREEMAN, with Thomas Hinckley, William Sargeant, Anthony Thacher, Nathaniel Bacon, Edmund HAWES, Thomas HOWES, Sr, Thomas FOLLAND, Sr and Lt. Joseph Rogers was allowed a grantee of the remaining portion with the privilege with the above named to purchase adjacent land.
In 1672, Major Freeman disposed of his right to William Nickerson; and in 1674 Major Freeman and Capt. Jonathan SPARROW were appointed to lay out Nickerson’s land with instructions, but for some cause the work was not accomplished by the committee until 1692.
Native American tribes who lived in the Chatham before European colonization include the Nauset, specifically the Manomoy or Monomoy people. “Manamoyik” was a Nauset village located near present-day Chatham. Explorer Samuel de Champlain landed here in 1606, contacting (and skirmishing with) the Nauset. English settlers first settled in Chatham in 1665, and the town was incorporated in 1712, naming it after Chatham, Kent, England. Located at the “elbow” of Cape Cod, the community became a shipping, fishing, and whaling center. Chatham’s early prosperity would leave it with a considerable number of 18th century buildings, whose charm helped it develop into a popular summer resort.
The Dennis Historical Society has the large oak chest owned by Thomas and Mary on display at the Josiah Dennis Manse.
The beautiful cupboard Mary brought to her second married to Gov. Thomas Prence (as his fourth wife) was purchased by Wallace Nutting and is on display at Wadsworth Atheneum in Hartford, Connecticut.You can read an article about the cupboard in Antiques magazine here.
1. Joseph Howes
Joseph’s wife Elizabeth Mayo was born 22 May 1653 in Eastham, Barnstable, Mass. Her parents were Rev. John Mayo (1598 – 1676) and Thomasine Constable (1605 – 1682). Elizabeth died 12 Mar 1700/01 Yarmouth, Barnstable, Mass.
John Mayo (died 1676) was the first minister of Old North Church in Boston also known as Second Church or Paul Revere’s Church. Increase and Cotton Mather took over this church upon his retirement. This is the Old North Church that was in North Square (across the street from what became Paul Revere’s house) until the church was dismantled and used by the British for firewood during the occupation of Boston during the Revolutionary War.
John Mayo of Northamptonshire, a commoner’s son, was one of 504 students who matriculated at Magdalen Hall, Oxford University in 1615. He came to New England in 1638. In order to travel, the harassed clergy had to disguise themselves and use assumed names. His wife was named Tamsen but we don’t know where or when they were married. John Mayo was in Barnstable by 1639, where he was ordained a minister on April 15, 1640. Governor William Bradford, Thomas Prence, and Captain Myles Standish were in attendance when Mr. John Mayo of Barnstable was admitted as a Freeman by the court of Plymouth on March 3rd in the 13th year of his Majesty’s Reign, 1640. In 1646 he moved to the newly settled town of Nausett (Eastham), where he served as the minister until 1654. While in Boston, he served as an overseer of Harvard College and the Boston Latin School.
At his death, Rev Mayo was living with his daughter Elizabeth and Thomas in Yarmouth having left Boston in 1673.
Children of Joseph and Elizabeth:
i. Samuel Howes b: ~1655 in Yarmouth, Plymouth Colony
ii. Mercy (Mary) Howes b: 1657 in Yarmouth, Plymouth Colony; d. 17 Jan 1695 in Yarmouth, Barnstable, Mass.; m. 16 Feb 1681 in Yarmouth, Mass. to John Hallett (b. 11 Dec 1650 Yarmouth, Barnstable, Mass; d. 10 Jun 1726 Yarmouth, Barnstable, Mass. John’s parents were Andrew HALLETT Jr. and Anna BESSE.
iii. Joseph Howes b: 1659 in Yarmouth, Plymouth Colony
iv. John Howes b: ~1664 in Yarmouth, Plymouth Colony
v. Elizabeth Howes b: ~1666 in Yarmouth, Plymouth Colony
vi. Nathaniel Howes b: ~1670 in Yarmouth, Plymouth Colony
vii. Hannah Howes b: ~1676 in Yarmouth, Plymouth Colony
viii. Amos Howes b: ~1679 in Yarmouth, Plymouth Colony
ix. Capt. Thomas Howes b: ~1680 in Yarmouth, Plymouth Colony; Will: 29 May 1736 Chatham, Mass.; Proved 19 Oct 1738; m. Content Smith (b. 8 Jun 1680 in Eastham, Plymouth Colony) Content’s parents were Daniel Smith and Mary Young. Her grandparents were our ancestors Ralph SYMTH and Elizabeth HOBART.
On 8 Apr 1703 Thomas bought by deed from William Griffith, Sr., all his real estate at Monomoit. It included a homestead lot of 26 acres in the Christopher Smith neighbourhood, 1/2 of 20 acres on the Great Neck, and about 40 acres of meadow land. On 22 Oct 1705 he bought by deed from Philip Griffith a lot of 4 acres adjoining the homestead, the other half of the 20 acre lot on the Great Neck, and another lot of meadow. On 6 Apr 1713 he bought by deed from James Eldredge, the farm he had inherited from his father Nicholas Eldredge, and which adjoined part of the Howes farm. He was selectman 2 years and treasurer 2 years. He was ensign of the military company in 1715, later becoming lieutenant and then captain.
2. Thomas Howes
Thomas’ wife Sarah Bangs was born in 1638 in Eastham, Mass. Her parents were Edward BANGS and Rebecca HOBART. Sarah died 28 Feb-1682/83 in Yarmouth, Mass.
Thomas Howes purchased land on 5 October 1658 at a certain farm lying in the liberties of Yarmouth, Yarmouth; confirmation of a sale by Capt. Miles Standish . to Mr. Thomas Howes of Yarmouth.
On 4 July 1673 the court at plymouth Colony; authorized Lt. Thomas Howes of Yarmouth as Guardian of “Marcye Hedge” [Mercy Hedges]. Mercy was the daughter of our ancestor William HEDGE.
Thomas served in King Philip’s War just before his death 20 Nov 1676 in Yarmouth. I haven’t found evidence he died as a result of the war. In the third expedition, early in 1676, Yarmouth furnished nine one month men, under Capt. Thomas Howes. The destination and nature of the service performed by this company is not stated, nor indicated in any of the records, but records state that Captain Howes was paid £6 00 00 for this service.
The third expedition, with Capt. Howes — for one month’s service
Capt. Thos. Howes £6 00 00
Sergeant Sam. Hall £3
Lemuel Hedge £1 16
John Matthews £1 16
John Whiting Jr. £1 16
Sam. Thomas £1 16
Sam. Jones £1 16
John Gage £1 16
Ben Rider £1 16
Total …. £19 16 00
Arms lost and expense of money and ammunition, and other expenses to the said service £4 03 09
The fifth expedition consisted of 21 men, under Capt. Thomas Howes. £11 13 00
3. Jeremiah HOWES (See his page)
5. Elizabeth Howes
Elizabeth’s husband Daniel Butler was born about 1642. His parents were Thomas Butler and Dorothy [__?__]. Daniel died 10 Jan 1715/16 Sandwich, Barnstable, Mass.
Daniel Butler was arrested by marshal George Barlow for entertaining a strange Quaker in his house and for resisting arrest, for which the court sentenced him to be whipped on 13 Jun 1660.
At a court of 5 Oct 1663, “Mr. Thomas Hawley complained against William Allen and Daniell Butler… to a damage of £40, with all other damages, for taking away his mare in a violent and royetous maner.” The jury found for the plantiff and awarded fifty shillings damages and costs “if the mare and colt delivered to the plaintiffe. otherwise £16.” This item is interesting for two reasons: (1) As we have seen, Thomas Butler had appeared on behalf of his son Daniel in the tar case of 5 May 1663. This would imply that Daniel Butler may have reached his majority between the two dates, so that his father was not responsible for the son in Oct 1663. (2) The implication is that the parties concerned did not consider this a case of theft. One wonders whether this mare may not have been one which was taken from the Quakers by the marshall since, if so, the question of maral ownership by Hawley may have been in doubt, which would explain the comparative mildness of the award to the plaintiff, as well as the wording of the entry. William Allen was a leader of the Quaker faction.
With the outbreak of the Pequot War in 1675, Daniel Butler was required to serve in the militia. As a Quaker he could not do so, and was fined £8 as a “deliquent soldier” 10 Mar 1675/6. His brother Obediah then was noted as “absent” and it may be that Daniel Butler also absented himself from Sandwich for a time, as his name does not appear on a 1675 list of Sandwich men. However, he does reappear in the list of 1677. He subscribed to the fund for a new Friends meeting house 1 of 7 mo. 1709, as did his son Obediah. He and his wife Elizabeth, their son Obediah and other relatives signed as witnesses to the marriage of the daughter Dorothy Butler, 23 of 11 mo. 1710, to Joseph Wing (Friends Meeting Records). Dorothy married Joseph Wing 03 Nov 1710, son of John Wing and Martha Spooner. She married Jashub Wing 30 Apr 1729.
Probably he acquired a major share of his father’s land in Falmouth by deed of gift, or purchase, and possibly he reared his family in that town, although their births are of record neither at Sandwich nor Falmouth. Fortunately, we find a Plymouth County deed which is helpful:
“I, Daniel Butler, Senr., of ffalmouth… yeoman… in considration of the love and goodwill and affection which I have and do bear unto my Loving Son, Obediah Butler of the town of Sandwich… husbandman, as also for other good considerations… do grant… all that my one lott, piece or parcell of upland… adjoining a little Cedar Swamp, in the town of Plymouth, and lyeth near the new way that leads from Sandwich Town to the dwelling house of Jonathan Morey, being by estimate thirty acres and a piece of land, formerly fraunted my Honoured Father Thomas Butler, deceased and derived from Quechassett, Indian Sachem and is bounded on the mosr Easterly side by the Cedar Swamp. and know ye further that John Sepit of ye sd Town of Plymouth, Indian, grandson and heir of the above name Quackassett, Indian Sachem, doth hereby acknowledge the bounds…” Signed by the marks of Daniell Butler and John Sepott. Dated 20 March 1714/5. Witnessed by Benjamin Swift, Ruth Stetson, Nathan Bassett. Acknowledged 25 Mar, entered 30 Mar 1715.
The will of Daniel Butler, Senr., of Falmouth… “now growing unto years” is dated 10 Sep 1712 and was presented for probated 10 Jan 1717. He gives:
“To my grandson Judah Bulter, only son of Judah Butler my son, deceased, all the land and meadow which I have not sold lying next to Nye’s land in Falmouth, afsd., part of which my sd son Judah Butler built a house on and, having the lands formerly of Edmond Freeman, lying on the Southerly side of it, which I give to him, my grandson… and I give to him… one bed and bedding that I bought which was his mother’s (provided that my son Daniel Butler does not see cause to keep the bed and bedding which he may do, provided that he five my sd grandson £10 in lieu of them). To my son Obediah Butler… all my upland and meadow ground which I formerly purchased of the Ellis’s, it lying and being in the town of Sandwich… and my five parcells of land lying at that [place] called the Herring Pond within the township of Plymouth and all my twenty on Division last layed out in Sandwich afsd, excepting what lies of it within the fence of the house lott on which Obediah now dwells, and also my right and interest in the common or undivided lands in the town of Sandwich after that forty acres is laid out called the Sheep Pasture and I also give unto him… all my household goods that now are and have been commonly used in that dwelling house in which he now dwells in Sandwich… and if it so happens that I do not in my life time sell and dispose of that dwelling house in which sd Obediah now dwells and the lott of land part of which sd house stands upon, that then my will is that the sd Obediah Butler my son shall have the house and lott of land, being all now within fence and uplands… in Falmouth which I purchased of or did belong to Joseph Allen, he the sd Daniell only pay to Shearjashub Bourne of Sandwich so much money as I shall justly owe him at the time of my decease if I shall not live to receive it an pay it myself to them, and also to each of them £5 out of my personal estate…”Sources:History of old Yarmouth. Comprising the present towns of Yarmouth and Dennis. From the settlement to the division in 1794 with the history of both towns to these times (1884) Author: Swift, Charles Francis