Lt. Edward Woodman

 Lt. Edward WOODMAN (1606 – 1694) was one of the 91 original  grantees who settled Newbury, Mass.  He was Alex’s 10th Great Grandfather; one of 2,048 in this generation of the Miller line.  He was also Alex’s 10th Great Grandfather; one of 2,048 in this generation of the Shaw line.  These lines didn’t come together for 350 years when I was born.

Monument to  Edward Woodman, at the Burying Ground of the First Settlers of Newbury Massachusetts, located on High Street Rd/ Route 1A in Newbury and was established in 1635.
Photo Credit:: Find A Grave Memorial# 6880833

Edward Woodman was baptized 27 Dec 1606 in Corsham,  Wiltshire, England. His parents were Edward WOODMAN and Collet MALLET.  He married Joanna SALWAY about 1628.  He and his half-brother, Archelaus Woodman, sailed Southampton aboard the “James” in Apr 1635 and arrived in Newbury 2 Jun 1635 or he came on the “Abigail” a few weeks later. Both brothers were settled at the Newbury plantation by 1635.  Both brothers lived in Newbury on Woodman Lane, now Kent Street. Archelaus died without issue. Dates for Edward’s death vary, 3 Jul 1692 or 14 Oct 1702 all agreee in Newbury, Mass. Both Edward and Joanna are likely buried in the cemetery opposite the old Coffin mansion. A monument to Edward Woodman stands in the First Settlers Burying Ground in Newbury, Mass.

Edward Woodman Monument – Newbury, Mass

Monument to Original Settlers in Newbury, Mass

Joanna Salway was born about 1614 in England.   Her parents were Arthur SALWAY and Mary [__?__]. Joanna died about 1688.

Children of Edward and Joanna:

Name Born Married Departed
1. Edward Woodman 14 Mar 1628
Milford, Surrey, England
Mary Goodrich
20 DEC 1653
27 Sep 1694
Newbury, Essex, Mass
2. John Woodman 1630
Mary Field
15 JUL 1656
Sarah Burnham
17 Oct 1700 in Dover, Strafford, New Hampshire
17 SEP 1706
Dover, NH
3. Joshua Woodman 1636  first white child born in Newbury Elizabeth Stevens
23 JAN 1665/66
30 MAY 1703 Newbury
4. Mary WOODMAN 1638
20 FEB 1659/60
30 Mar 1703 in Newbury, Mass
5. Sarah Woodman 12 JAN 1641/42 Newbury John Kent
12 MAR 1665/66 Newbury
6. Capt. Jonathan Woodman 8 NOV 1643 Newbury Hannah Hilton (daughter of William HILTON Jr.)
2 JUL 1668
21 NOV 1706 Newbury
7. Ruth WOODMAN 28 Mar 1646 in Newbury, Mass Benjamin LOWELL
17 Oct 1666
Newbury, Mass.

Edward was a lieutenant in the Pequot war of June 1637.  Later, he was a wealthy and prominent man.

Edward  had two sisters, Mary and Elizabeth. After his mother died 5 July 1611, his father married Edith (surname unknown) and had six more children: Archelaus, Rebecca, Walter, Jonathan, Anne, and David.

Plan of Plots First Settlers of Newbury – Edward Woodman’s lot is Nbr. 22

In Coffin’s History of Newbury, Edward Woodman is called “a man of talents, influence, firmness, and decision.” The title “Mister” usually preceded his name, which implies he was a prominent citizen.

Edward Woodman, a mercer and wine merchant, was licensed 12 Jan 1637/38 to sell wine and strong drink. He is also listed as “husbandman” in some records. He became a Freeman 25 May 1636 and was active in the affairs of the Congregational Church in Newbury.

On 8 Sep 1636, he was chosen deputy from Newbury to the General Court, which was located at Boston, a distance of 40 miles. The records of theMassachusetts Bay Colony, in the office of the Secretary of State atBoston, show that Edward Woodman was Deputy from Newbury in 1636, 1637, 1639, 1643, 1659, 1660, 1664, and 1670.

At various times, he held other offices of profit and trust in Newbury and the state. Among his commissions from the state was “to see people marry” which he later resigned saying “An unprofitable commission: I quickly laid aside the works, which has cost me many a bottle of sacke and liquor, where friends and acquaintances have been concerned.”

April 1637 – One hundred and sixty men, under the command of captain Stoughton, were raised to go against the Pequods. Of this number Newbury raised eight, Ipswich seventeen, Salem eighteen, Lynn sixteen, and Boston twenty-six. It will serve to give the reader some idea of the all-pervading influence of the theological discussions, which were then agitating the whole community, 1o inform him, on the authority of Neal, that, these very troops deemed it necessary to halt on their march to Connecticut, in order to decide the question, whether they were under a covenant of grace or a covenant of works, deeming it improper to advance till that momentous question was settled. These soldiers were to have twenty shillings per month, lieutenants 4, and captains 6. In May Mr. John Spencer was discharged from being captain. This was probably owing to his religious tenets, he being an adherent of Mrs. Hutchinson. ‘ Mr. Edward WOODMAN was chosen lieutenant, and Mr. John Woodbridge, surveyor of the armes at Newbury.

Edward’s brother Archelaus Woodman married first Elizabeth (surname unknown) and second Dorothy Chapman. He had two daughters, but no male heirs. So all area descendants, with the Woodman surname, are from the Edward Woodman line. Newbury records show Archelaus, a lieutenant, served as representative in 1674 and 1675.

17 May 1637 – Archelaus Admitted Freeman.  Archelaus Woodman, we learn from the historian, Coffin, took great interest in Governor Winthrop’s campaign for the governorship against Sir Harry Vane, as the close of the latter’s term drew near. So Mr. Woodman, with nine others including John CHENEY,  Thomas COLEMAN, Henry Sewall Jr, Nicholas Noyes [Cheney’s future father-in-law], Robert Pike [future founder of Nantucket, liberal dissenter, witch trial critic and son-in-law of Joseph MOYCE], Thomas Smith, James BROWNE, Nicholas Holt [future son-in-law of Humphrey BRADSTREET, and John Bartlett, .walked forty miles from Newbury to Cambridge on foot to take the “freeman’s oath” and qualify themselves to vote in the election which was soon to take place.  It was by such prompt movements that Winthrop was elected and the conservative party triumphed.

Vane lost his position to the elder John Winthrop  in the 1637 election.  The contentious election was marked by a sharp disagreement over the treatment of John Wheelwright, a supporter of Anne Hutchinson [daughter of our ancestor Francis MARBURY  (1555–1611) (wikipedia)] Winthrop won in part because the location of the vote was moved to Cambridge, reducing the power of Vane’s Boston support.  In the aftermath of the election Anne Hutchinson was put on trial, and eventually banished from the colony.

Many of her followers seriously considered leaving after the election. At the urging of  Roger Williams, some of these people, including Hutchinson, founded the settlement of Portsmouth on Aquidneck Island in the Narragansett Bay (later named Rhode Island and joined to Providence to form the Colony of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations).

Vane decided to return to England, apparently with the notion that he would acquire a royal governorship to trump the colonial administration.  Before his departure, he published A Brief Answer to a Certain Declaration, a response to Winthrop’s defense of the Act of Exclusion; this act was passed after the election to restrict the immigration of people with views not conforming to the colony’s religious orthodoxy.

Edward Woodman first appears in New England history as a settler in Newbury, Massachusetts, at the incorporation of that town in 1635, and from the fact that he went there in company with Archelaus Woodman it is supposed that they were brothers. One chronicler of the family history says that Archelaus Woodman came from Christian Malford, Wiltshire, England, that he took passage in the “James” of London in April, 1635, but it does not appear whether Edward came with him or arrived in New England in the “Abigail” a few weeks later. All that we know is that Archelaus and Edward Woodman sat down in the plantation at Newbury in 1635.

Edward Woodman was one of ninety-one grantees of Newbury and one of the fifteen persons among the proprietors who were addressed “Mr.,” a title indicating social position, influence and character above that of the average colonist. He became prominently identified with affairs of the church and figured as leader of the movement which resulted in setting aside some strict regulations of church government.

In 1636 and three times afterward he was deputy to the general court, and in 1638 he was commissioned magistrate “to end small causes.” It appears also to have been his office “to see people marry,” which he once spoke of as “an unprofitable commission, which has cost me many a bottle of sacke and liquor, where friends and acquaintances have been concerned.”

29 Nov 1652 – At the Newbury town meeting,  the town voted “that Mr. Woodman, Richard Kent, Jr., Lieutenant Pike and Nicholas Noyes should be a committee for managing the business of the schoole.”.

Parker- Woodman War

For many years the church in Newbury had been divided, almost equally, between the original pastor, Reverend Thomas Parker, and Mr. Edward WOODMAN, of whom the noted historian Joshua Coffin wrote: “He was a man of influence, decision and energy, and opposed with great zeal the attempt made by the Rev. Thomas Parker to change the mode of Church government from Congregationalism to something like Presbytarianism.” This divison of the town was not due to a great difference of theology, but of church governemt.

As early as 1645 the Rev. Parker and his party maintained the church should be governed by the pastor, his assistants, and a ruling elder. Mr. Woodman’s party believed it was the right of the members of the church, and government should be by the congretation. In a letter to the church council, Mr. Edward stated, “As for our controversy it is whether God hath placed the power in the elder, or in the whole church, to judge between truth and error, right and wrong, brother and brother, and all things of church concernment.” These ecclesiastical problems, which grew more violent and partisan each year, plagued the town for over 25 yearsand became known throughout New England as the “Parker-Woodmam War.”

By 1669 difference of opinion had grown to such proportions that an appeal was made to the civil authorities. the court proceedings began March 13th at Ipswich and continued on and off for over two years. The decision of the court, on May 29, 1671, found in favor of Rev. Parker’s part and levied fines against the members of Mr. Woodman’s party. Edward Woodman was fined 20 nobles. [ A noble is six shillings and eight-pence so Edward’s fine was a little more than 13 pounds]

Mr. Richard Dummer , Richard THORLAY (THURLOW), Stephen Greenleaf [son of Edmund GREENLEAF], Richard Bartlet and William Titcomg, fined 4 nobles each. Francis Plummer, John Emery, Sr., John Emery, Jr., John Merrill and Thomas Browne, a Mark each. [A mark is thirteen shillings and fourpence. ]

All others Nicholas Batt, Anthony MORSE Sr, Abraham Toppan, William Sawyer, Edward Woodman junior, William Pilsbury, Caleb Moody, John Poor Sr, John Poor Jr, John Webster, John Bartlet Sr., John Bartlet Jr, Joseph Plumer, Edward Richardson, Thomas Hale Jr., Edmund Moores, Benjamin LOWLE (LOWELL), Job Pilsbury, John Wells, William Ilsley, James Ordway, Francis THORLA (THORLAY), Abraham Merrill, John Bailey, Benjamin Rolf, Steven Swett, and Samuel Plumer, a noble each.   However, the judgement of the court did not bring an end to the controversy, and the conflict continued for several years. Note: For a complete chronology, see pages 72-112 of Joshua Coffin’s History of Newbury.

A Baptist Church was formed in Newbury with the consent of the First Baptist Church of Boston on February 6, 1681/82. the church was formed by eight residents of the town, which included Mr. Edward Woodman and wife.

25 Mar 1681 –  Edward Woodman conveyed to his youngest son, Jonathan, “My now dwelling house, houses and barns and orchard and pasture, and all my plow land lying by and adjoining to the said houses, as also all the plow lands upon the northwest side of the street lying upon the westward side of my house, the said street being vulgarly called the New Street.” [New Street, later called “Woodman Lane” is now Kent Street in the town of Newburyport.] The consideration for this conveyance was “natural and fatherly love and affection” and “twenty pounds of which is yearly to be paid during the time of my own and my wife’s natural life.”

In the genealogy”The Woodmans of Buxton, Maine” Cyrus Woodman wrote: “This was in his old age, and was evidently an arrangement under which he and his wife were to have a home with, and be provided for, by their son Jonathan during their lives.” The date of Edward’s death is unknown but it is thought to be after 1690. There was not record of a will being filed or proved.

Edward’s s body was interred 1st Burying Ground in Newbury, Essex Co., Massachusetts. His marker reads, “In memory of Mr. Edward Woodman who came from England and Settled in Newbury in 1635. ‘A man of talents, influence, firmness and decision.’ He served faithfully for many years as Selectman, Deputy to the General Court and Commissioner.

Edward died previous to 1694 and both he and his wife Joanna were living in 1687.


1. Edward Woodman

Edward’s wife Mary Goodrich was born 8 Jan 1633 in Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk, England. Her parents were William Goodrich and Margaret Butterfield. Mary died 18 May 1684 in Newbury, Essex, Mass.

William Goodrich settled in Watertown, Mass. in 1636, and died before May, 1645.

2. John Woodman

John’s first wife Mary Field was born 1631 in Dover, Strafford, New Hampshire. Her parents were Darby Field and Agnes Roberts. Mary died 6 Jul 1698 in Dover, Strafford, New Hampshire.

John’s second wife Sarah Burnham was born 1654 in Dover, Strafford, New Hampshire. Her parents were Robert Burnham and Frances Hill. She first married 1671 in Dover, Strafford, New Hampshire to James Huckins (b. 1644 in Dover, Strafford, New Hampshire – d. 28 Aug 1689 in Oyster River, Strafford, New Hampshire). Sarah died in 1705 in Oyster River, New Hampshire,

3. Joshua Woodman

Joshua was the first white child born in Newbury

Joshua’s wife Elizabeth Stevens was born 4 FEB 1642 in Andover, Essex, Mass. Her parents were John Stevens (1605 – 1662) and Elizabeth Parker (1613 – 1694). Elizabeth died 30 May 1703 – Newbury, Essex, Mass.

4. Mary WOODMAN (See John BROWNE Jun‘s page)

5. Sarah Woodman

Sarah’s husband John Kent was born 20 Jul 1645 in Newbury, Essex, Mass. His parents were Richard Kent and Dorothy Emma Shorte. John died 30 Jan 1718 in Newbury, Essex, Mass

6. Capt. Jonathan Woodman

Jonathan’s wife Hannah Hilton was born 12 Feb 1649 Newbury, Mass.  Her parents were William HILTON Jrand Sarah GREENLEAF.  Hannah died 15 Nov 1706 in Newbury, Mass.

7. Ruth WOODMAN (See Benjamin LOWELL‘s page)


A sketch of the history of Newbury, Newburyport, and West Newbury, from 1635 to 1845 (1845) By Coffin, Joshua, 1792-1864; Bartlett, Joseph, 1686-1754

This entry was posted in 12th Generation, Double Ancestors, Historical Monument, Historical Site, Immigrant - England, Line - Shaw, Pioneer, Public Office, Tavern Keeper, Veteran and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

27 Responses to Lt. Edward Woodman

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  23. Maryjane Thibodeau says:

    I am Maryjane Woodman Thibodeau 12 th generation of Edward woodman line. Loving the Interesting history.

    • I am Duane Arthur Woodman. My Uncle Gordon Woodman started researching the Woodman line many years ago. One thing I do remember distinctly is the Woodman Crest. That crest has taken me farther back in the Woodman history, all the way back to the 12 Tribes of Israel. A few years ago it was suggested that I was Hebrew and the Family of Woodman came from the tribe of Naphtali. I am researching and creating a new website which has not posted as of 4/2017. The older one is at If anyone has information about the Woodmans past let me know.

  24. Beryl Roger Woodman II says:

    I am Beryl R. Woodman II and I have been studying the Woodman past and the family crest. I am the ninth generation of Edward Woodman and fourteenth generation of Nicholas Richard Woodman. I have gotten stuck going back at John Richard Woodman born 1490. I can not find anymore information. I have also not been able to find out my legal right to use the family crest. I was in England at Hyde on a job for my company at the time 1996. I contacted the College of Arms to find out about the coat of arms and received a letter stating that there was a “Visitation of Surrey carried out in 1623(College of Arms Ms: C2/249b) . A pedigree was photocopyed and on record but there was no right to arms recorded. There was record later of three families 1668 with right to the arms.

  25. Bret Cantwell says:

    Just want to point out that Joshua Woodman, my 8th great-grandfather, was the first white male born in Newbury. Mary Brown, daughter of Thomas Brown was the first white child born there.

    • Beryl Roger Woodman II says:

      Thanks Bret,
      I am direct male descendant of Lt. Edward Woodman through his son Edward Woodman. That line moved to New Hampshire, to Maine, to Quebec Canada, to Michigan. That is where 4 generations of us were when I was born 12 May 1944. Thanks again for your comments.
      Beryl R. Woodman II

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