John Browne (Newbury)

John BROWNE (1665 – 1729) was Alex’s 9th Great Grandfather, one of 1,024  in this generation of the Shaw line and one of 1,024  in the Miller line.  (See his son Thomas BROWNE for details of the double ancestors)

We have five separate Brown lines and seven different Brown immigrant ancestors, by far the most of any surname.  When the surname is of English origin it is derived from a nickname concerning the complexion of an individual, or the colour of their hair. Brown is derived from the Old English brunbrūn; Middle English brunbroun; or Old French brun.

1. John BROWNE Sr. (Swansea). (1583 Hawkedon, Suffolk  – 1662 Swansea, Mass)
John BROWN Jr.  (1620 -1662 Rehoboth, Mass)

2. John BROWN (Hampton) (1589 London – 1677 Salem, Mass)

3.  Nicholas BROWN (1601 Inkberrow, Worcester – 1694 Reading, Mass)

4. James BROWNE (1605 Southhampton, Hampshire  -1676 Salem, Mass.)

5. Thomas BROWNE (1607 Christian Malford, Wiltshire – 1687 Newbury, Mass.)
Francis BROWN I (1633  Christian Malford, Wiltshire – 1691  Newbury, Mass.)

John Brown was born 13 May 1665 in Newbury, Mass.  His parents were Francis BROWN I and Mary JOHNSON.   He married Ruth HUSE on 27 Aug 1683 in Newbury, Mass.  John died 18 Sep 1729 in Newbury, Mass.

Ruth Huse was born on 25 Feb 1663/64 in Newbury, Mass.  Her parents were Abel HUSE and Mary HILTON.  Ruth died about 1697 in Newbury.

Children of John and Ruth:

Name Born Married Departed
1. John Brown 27 Oct 1683 Newbury Susan Dutton
Elizabeth Dole
20 Jan 1713 Newbury
16 Nov 1724
2. Isaac Brown 4 Feb 1685 Newbury 7 Oct 1695 Newbury
Killed in an Indian attack at his home
3. Henry Brown ca. 1686 Newbury, Mass. Died Young before 1695
4. Thomas BROWN 1 Jan 1687/88  Newbury, Mass. Ann CHUTE
3 Dec 1712
21 Dec 1745
Newbury, Mass.
5. Joseph Brown 5 Nov 1690
Abigail Hills
26 Dec 1723 Newbury
Before Aug 1728 Newbury
6. Abel Brown 4 Nov 1693 Newbury 10 Jun 1705 Newbury
7. Ruth Brown 16 Jul 1695 Newbury John Butler
16 Mar 1714/15 Stonington, CT

John Brown lived with his father on the farm on the southwesterly side of Turkey Hill.   Here’s today’s street view of Turkey Hill Road in Newburyport from Google Maps, less than half a mile from I95.
View Larger Map

7 Oct 1695 – In the afternoon, a party of Indians, not more than five or six in number, secreted themselves near John Brown’s house; and, after the male members of the family had departed with a load of farm produce, the Indians left their place of concealment, and, stealthily approaching the house, tomahawked a girl standing at the front door, seized such articles of household furniture and wearing apparel as they could conveniently take away, and hastily departed with nine captives, all women and children. The names and ages of the children of John and Ruth Brown at this time were as follows:

John, born Oct. 27. 1683, twelve years old.
Isaac, born Feb. 4. 1685, ten years, eight months old. (died on that date)
Thomas, born Jan. 1, 1689, five years, ten months old.
Joseph, born Nov. 5, 1690, nearly five years old.
Abel, born April 4, 1693, two years, six months old.
Ruth, born July, 1695, three months old.

Only one inmate of the house, a girl, escaped capture; and, after the departure of the Indians, she gave the alarm. Colonel Daniel Pierce, of Newbury, immediately notified Colonel Appleton and Colonel Wade, of Ipswich, that assistance was needed, and requested that men be sent to range the woods toward Bradford and Andover, to prevent the escape of the Indians, if possible.

According to tradition, the captives were recovered on the northwesterly side of Pipe Stave Hill, near a small stream that empties into the Merrimack, now known as Indian River. The number killed or seriously injured is somewhat uncertain, as the reports of the attack and pursuit are contradictory and confusing.

Cotton Mather, in volume 2, book 7, article 23, of the ” Magnalia,” says : —

The Indians entered the house of one John Brown at Newbury, carrying away nine persons with them. Captain [Stephen] Greenleaf, [grandson of Edmund GREENLEAF] pursuing the murderers, was wounded by them, but retook the captives. The Indians, however, had beaten them so unmercifully that they all afterward died except one lad who was only hurt in the shoulder. Some of them lingered for six months, and some for more than a year, suffering from their wounds.

Judge Samuel Sewall in his diary says :  Oct. 7, 1695. Jn” Brown’s family of Turkey hill are led captive. All are brought back save one boy that was killed; knock’d the rest on the head, save an infant.

Rev. John Pike in his journal says, “The captives were all retaken, but some died of their wounds.”

Oct. 8, 1695, Colonel Thomas Wade wrote from Ipswich as follows: —

Honored Sir,
Just now Captain Wicom brings information that the last night Captain Greenleaf with a party of men met with the enemy by the river side, have redeemed all the captives but one, which they doubt is killed. Three of the Indians got into a canoe and made escape, and the other two ran into the woods. Captain Greenleaf is wounded in the side and arm, how much we know not, which is all at present from your servant.
Thomas Wadk.

On the 5th of March, 1695-6, Captain Greenleaf [grandson of our ancestor Capt. Edmund GREENLEAF] addressed the following petition to the General Court:

To the Honh1* William Stoughton Esqr Lieu’ Governr &c. the Council and Representatives of his Ma*” Province of the Massachusetts Bay in New England, convened in General Assembly, March 5″‘ 1695-6.
The Petition of Cap* Stephen Greenleafe of Newbury Humbly sheweth That upon the 7″‘ of October last, about three o’clock in the afternoon, a party of Indians surprised a Family at Turkey hill in sd town, captivated nine persons, women and Children, rifled the house, carrying away the Bedding and other Goods. Only one person in the House escaped; and gave notice to the next Family and they to the Town. Upon the Alarm your Petr with a party of men pursued after the Enemy, endeavoring to line the River Merrimack to prevent their passing over, by which meanes the Captives were recovered and brought back.
The Enemy lay in a Gully hard by the Highway, and about nine at night made a shot at your Petitioner and shot him through the Wrist between the bones, and also made a large wound in his side, Which wounds have been very painful and costly to your Pet’ in the cure of them and have in a great measure utterly taken away the use of his left hand, and wholly taken him off from his Imployment this Winter.
Your Petitioner therefore humbly prayes this HonrI,K’ Court that they would make him Such Compensation as shall seem fit, which he shall thankfully acknowledge, and doubts not but will be an Encouragemen’ to others speedily to relieve their Neighbours when assaulted by so barbarous an Enemy.
And your Petr shall ever pray, &c.
Stephen Greenleaf.*

In answer to this petition a vote was passed and approved March 7, 1695-6, and embodied in Chapter 63 of the Laws of the Province of Massachusetts Bay, as follows: —

Upon reading the petition of Capt” Stephen Greenleaf of Newbury, lately wounded and maimed in his maj’-vs service, praying some allowance and compensation for his smart, cure, loss of time and of the use of his left hand,—
Voted, a concurrance with the representatives, that the said Captain Stephen Greenleaf be paid, out of the province treasury, the sum of forty pounds, which shall be in full of what he hath been out upon cure and what yearly pension he might have expected had not this been granted.

Coffin, in his History of Newbury, says, “This is the only instance in which the Indians either attacked, captivated, or killed any of the inhabitants of the town of Newbury.


1. John Brown

John’s first wife Susan Dutton

John’s second wife Elizabeth Dole was born 16 Aug 1692 in Newbury, Essex, Mass. Her parents were John Dole and Mary Gerrish. Elizabeth died 31 Jan 1731 in Newbury, Essex, Mass.

4. Thomas BROWN (See his page)

5. Joseph Brown

Joseph’s wife Abigail Hills was born 27 Jun 1695 in Newbury, Essex, Mass. Her parents were Samuel Hills and Abigail Wheeler.

7. Ruth Brown

Ruth’s husband John Butler was born in 1688 in Connecticut. His parents were Daniel Butler and Margaret [__?__]. John died in 1758 in Connecticut.


Ould Newbury: Historical and Biographical Sketches By John James Currier 1886 – Story of Indian attack

This entry was posted in 11th Generation, Line - Miller, Line - Shaw, Storied, Violent Death and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

11 Responses to John Browne (Newbury)

  1. Pingback: Thomas Brown | Miner Descent

  2. Pingback: Francis Brown | Miner Descent

  3. Pingback: Abel Huse | Miner Descent

  4. Pingback: John Brown (London) | Miner Descent

  5. Pingback: John Browne Sr. (Swansea) | Miner Descent

  6. Pingback: John Brown (Rehoboth) | Miner Descent

  7. Hi,

    Thanks for sharing this link – but unfortunately it seems to be down? Does anybody here at have a mirror or another source?


  8. markeminer says:

    Hi, John,

    Site is back up. Seems to be a bug in WordPress’ spam checking as they explained to me.

    Cheers, Mark

  9. Pingback: Untimely Deaths | Miner Descent

  10. Pingback: Capt. Edmund Greenleaf | Miner Descent

  11. Pingback: Indian Kidnaps | Miner Descent

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