Putnam/ Dougherty family genealogy

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Seth Putnam~ misfortune of just life on the frontier?

How do you find the stories about your family?
Sometimes it is a notation in a church record, on the census page, in a newspaper account, a note in a will, or a written history of the town or county they lived in. This week’s prompt is Misfortune. Was it misfortune or just life on the frontier? This week’s story comes from the History of two different communities that were the home for one of my ancestors.

Salem, Massachusetts
The Putnam line has been the famous and the infamous. With the early tales of Salem and Danvers,Massachusetts the Putnam’s of 1690’s have been well documented for their part in the Salem Witch hysteria. In 1695 Ann(e) Putnam wife of Thomas and mother to Ann(e) (one of the accusers) gave birth to Seth who was my 6x great grandfather. In May of 1699 when Seth was only 4 years old his father Thomas died and only 14 days later his mother Ann(e) died. Seth was one of 12 children born to Thomas and Ann(e) (Carr) Putnam. His sister Ann(e) was 20 and brother Thomas was 19 when their parents died. Such a misfortune.

For Seth it must have been difficult growing up never knowing your parents and with the knowledge that your sister and mother played such a major role in the witch hysteria. So who raised Seth? There is a record that notes who the guardians were for the other minor children but not Seth or his younger sister. The probate and guardianship papers on Ancestry for Thomas Putnam are a mess. There are many other Putnam’s intermixed with what is supposedly Thomas’ file. The hand writing to my modern eye is atrocious. So they are no help to me, maybe someone else could sort them out and transcribe them (Madeleine?). When Seth’s sister Ann(e) (who never married) died in 1716 she does mention her brothers by name and Seth is listed in her will.  http://www.writeopinions.com/ann-putnam-jr  “When her parents died in 1699, (Ann) Putnam was left to raise her nine siblings aged 7 months to 16 years.”  When Ann(e) died Seth would have been 21 years old. And probably had been on his own for some time.

Seth Putnam's places of residence.

Click on image to enlarge.

Billerica, Massachusetts.

In 1718 Seth married Ruth Whipple in Salem. Seth is reported in the History of Billerica, Massachusetts, A Genealogical Register to have bought a house-lot and 60 acres in 1719 from Samuel Walker (part of the “Church farm”) in Billerica for £200. His name appears several times in the Billerica town records in 1733.  The  Genealogical Register includes the location of the property and that he had lived there 25 years “and then became a grantee of No. 4” of the Massachusetts Bay Colony, the early name for Charlestown, later of New Hampshire.

No. 4 (Charlestown).

From the History of Charlestown, New Hampshire, The Old No. 4 , Seth’s sons Ebenezer and Seth Jr. were at No. 4 in 1746 when Seth Jr. (part of the militia) was the first of the settlers killed by Indians. Another misfortune. In the Evening the women were to go out to milk the cows, Major Josiah Willard and several soldiers accompanied them. As they approached the stables a party of eight Native Americans fired upon them. Seth fell and the Major and the other soldiers returned fire striking two of the raiders who where quickly dragged off by the rest of their party.

The fort at No. 4
CLICK TO ENLARGE IMAGE

The remainder of the family including daughter Ruth and sons Thomas and Timothy (my 5x great grandfather) came out to Charlestown about 1750. From the time that the Massachusetts Bay Colony settled No4 until after the Treaty ending the French and Indian War (1754-1763) this outpost was in constant danger. The French and the Native Americans coming down from Canada to raid and fight the settlers and British soldiers, were passing right by this settlement along the Connecticut River. The Fort at No.4 was established about 1745 and Massachusetts provided military protection (by a petition from the citizens to Massachusetts Governor), but life on this frontier was dangerous. Seth’s daughter Ruth married Peter Labaree who was captured by the Indians and managed to escape. Other families had members who were also taken at various times and some were given to the French, who might try to ransom them, or to other Natives Americans who kept them as replacements for their own lost family members. In 1775 a smallpox epidemic swept through the colonies, Seth died that year at age 80, whether or not it was from smallpox I have not been able to determine.

Use History’s of Places.

Title Page History of Charlestown New Hampshire

I really enjoy reading these history’s of the communities were the families lived. It is great that so many of them are now on line. They are not exactly “politically correct” but they do give a look at these early settlements and the families that pioneered them. If you haven’t before or if it’s been awhile, google the town you’re interested in learning more about and see whats out there. You can also use Family Search catalogue file for places and see what they have available.

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Favorite Family Photo’s #52 Ancestors

This weeks challenge is to write about my favorite photo. With my passion of genealogy also comes a love of all these old family photos. Instead of trying to choose one, I think I’ll show you a few that have changed how I view those in the photos from how I knew them.
It is great to be able to put a face and context to our family who we did not know in the prime of their lives.

Well that’s a real disappointment. The first photo I was going to go with I can not find. The photo is  of my maternal grandfather when he was at Cornell and when I look at it I see a different young man from the person I only knew as an elderly and stern man. Another one from that same time period is this one of my grandparents on the day they were married. It is not a formal photo and they truly look very happy and carefree. Nothing like the buttoned-up formal couple they were in latter life.

This next photo is of my paternal grandparents who were quite different from my other grandparents. Here they look to be teenagers, that would make it taken about 1900. Since grandpa Ike died when I was just 2 years old I have no memory of him but my grandma (Gay) lived to be 93 I felt I really knew her. She was a little rough around the edges but had a huge heart. This was said to have been taken on the Elliott ranch, where her parents worked, near Visalia in California and it looks like their home was also a little rough. They were most likely pretty poor. Ike is wearing both suspenders and a belt. Her hair is quite something.

 

This next one is my mothers brother, Walt, who as a kid appears to be a”class clown”.  I think he is about 10 years old here. He was a thespian and a swordsman in college and later in life was a drum major for his local Shriners unit. The man I knew was mechanically inventive and a hard worker.

 

And now  this is one of my father and his sister (Eunice). It was taken in 1926. This is his first car. I do not know why his sister has a bouquet but I am assuming it was a special occasion. But why are they so serious? My aunt was always one with a ready smile and always so stylish. She was very particular about her clothes. She did not have a lot of clothes but she always handled them with great care and put them away wrapped with tissue paper. Now my dad worked road construction jobs when I was growing up. He drove a grader and came home filthy dirt. He would always clean up before dinner but I did not consider him “dapper”,  but many of his pictures from his younger days show him fairly well dressed, and that car was a “Star” (brand name) and looks quite sporty.

 

A Putnam family recipe

What is your favorite family recipe? For me it was what my family called Spanish Steak. I can just smell it frying. Spanish Steak cooking

Now mind you we have absolutely no Spanish blood but still my father’s mother made what the family called Spanish Steak. Where this recipe came from I can only speculate. We lived in California and my father’s family had come during the gold rush and his mothers side had mostly been there for several generations also. Maybe it was from the early Spanish Californians or the later immigrants from the Azors that were the family’s neighbor.  My fathers mother was known to me simply as Gay. Now Gay was not a sophisticated woman. She was a ranchers wife and what we would have called tough as nails. She loved her flowers and belonged to the Visalia garden club. Like most women of her generation she spent lots of time in the kitchen and while she was not a fancy cook she got most of the basics correct. Her kitchen was not large, but it had a large round oak table at one end. The stove was to the right by the back door and the sink and drain board was directly accross from the table while the refrigerator was to the left next to the opening into the living room. Gay was a short woman I do not think she was much over five feet tall. She always wore a dress and most often she had a large bib style apron on over her dress. If we were having Spanish steak we would more then likely also have asparagus and roasted potatoes.Spanish Steak

Putnam Family Spanish Steak

1 lb. beef Round Steak  1/2″ thick

1 egg beaten

2 tablespoons of water

1/2 cup flour

1 teaspoon cayenne pepper or to taste

salt and peper

Cut meat into 2 serving -size pieces. Place meat between  2 pieces of plastic wrap. Pound lightly with meat mallet until well tenderized, remove plastic wrap.

In a shallow dish combine egg and water.  In another shallow pan combine flour, cayenne and salt and pepper. dip meat into flour mixture then egg mixture and then again into flour mixture.

In a cast iron skillet cook meat in hot oil over medium heat until brown, turning once.

 

 

Easter Memories

Easter 1955

Easter 1955

My sister Madeleine and I are closer in age to each other then we are to our other sister and brother. When we were quite young about 3 & 4, people would often ask if we were twins. We did not usually dress alike, except  I remember on most Easter Sundays we would wear the latest “hand-me-downs” from our step-cousins Irene and Joanie. They were what I would have called “matchy – matchy”.  For the longest time I did think that Irene and Joanie were twins because their clothes always seamed to match. Gosh those hats are awful. I remember those skirts were a corduroy and so were those hats. The net petticoat was part of the outfit so I guess we had to show them off also. Quite the look back then. Easter morning meant going to St. Paul’s church in Visalia before coming home for our egg hunt either at home or over at Aunt Babe’s. Easter Dinner at Aunt Babe’s was a table set up in her back yard.  I was looking for that iconic photo we have where we are all around the table, even Grandpa Francis our great grand father was there in the background. I do not think the lawn had been cut which of course was better for hiding the eggs.

52 Ancestors – Ruth Whipple Putnam

I have a calendar I printed out with all the relatives birthday, anniversary and death days. In reviewing October I was struck by the number of contemporaries that celebrate their birthday this month. I see one non-contemporary that was born over 300 years ago. Ruth Whipple was born 27 October 1692 ( the year of the Salem Witch Trials) in Ipswich, Essex county Massachusetts to Joseph D. and Sarah (Fairfield) Whipple.

Ipswich Mass. town records, births

Ipswich Mass. town records, births

On 20 November 1708, when Ruth was 16 years of age her father Joseph died and 5 years later  on 16 September 1713 her mother Sarah died.

Ruth Whipple married Seth Putnam on 16 September 1718 in Salem, Essex county Massachusetts. So looking at the map of Ipswich in relation to Salem. I wonder how they met? On the map below Ipswich is north of Salem, and Billerica is to the west. Remember to click on image to enlarge.

Partial Map of Massuchusetts

Partial Map of Massuchusetts

A year after their marriage their first child Ebenezer is recorded as being born 8 August 1719 in Billerica, Massachusetts.

 

Massachusetts Town Records Billerica

Massachusetts Town Records
Billerica

From this listing for Billerica we see eight children born to Seth and Ruth from 1719 – 1732. Timothy their last child born on Christmas day 1732.

Sometime between 1740 and 1749 Seth and Ruth Putnam and several of their children including Ebenezer, Seth Jr. and Timothy relocated to Charlestown New Hampshire known at that time as No.4. It was one of 9 settlements from Massachusetts designated in the frontier area. Members of ancestry.com can view the History of Charlestown to learn more about the early years of Charlestown and their troubles during the French and Indian wars. Also we find the death of a Seth Putnam who may or may not be the son of Seth and Ruth.

Seth Putnam Senior dies 30 November 1775. He is buried in Charlestown.

Seth Putnam tombstone Find a grave added by Pam Emery

Seth Putnam tombstone
from findagrave.com
added by Pam Emery

Here lies Buried
Mr. Seth Putnam
Who departed this Life
Nov. 30, 1775 aged
80 years & 6 Months.

Ruth died 1 February 1785 and is buried also in Charlestown, New Hampshire.

Ruth Whipple Putnam tombstone from findagrave.com added by Pam Emery

Ruth Whipple Putnam tombstone
from findagrave.com
added by Pam Emery

In Memory of
Mrs. Ruth, Wife of Mr.
Seth Putnam Who
died Feb. 1, 1785.
In the 93rd year
of her age.

 

52 Ancestors – Timothy Putnam- Revolutionary War Soldier

Who do I write about when I think about independence. We have many ancestors who were in this country during the revolutionary war and this past week the online Fold3 (Website) has made it possible to research their revolutionary files for free (until July 15th). I thought “great now I will be able to get some documentation on those who were fighting for our independence from England”. I started with one I knew had been involved: Abner Amsdale. Well of course there were listings for Abner Amsdale, but was he our Abner? Then I decided to see if any of my direct line for the Putnam’s were involved. We all had heard of General Israel Putnam but we know that he is not an Ancestor but a half brother to our line. My 5x great grandfather, Timothy Putnam born in 1732 he could have been involved or his son my 4x great grandfather Timothy born 1860, so I decided to pursue a Timothy Putnam. In looking for Timothy on Fold3 I found one from Mass. but my Timothy’s lived in New Hampshire during the conflicts.

I finally was able to see that a Timothy Putnam is listed in Charlestown New Hampshire’s list of Revolutionary War solders on a Rootsweb site. Listed as Company No. 1 Col. Benjamin Bellows’ Regiment, with Captain Able Walker.   According to this account, in the spring of 1777 Ticonderoga  was in danger and Capt. Able  Walker takes his company there to give defense. The listing given by Rev. Henry H. Saunderson  shows a Private Timothy Putnam. Timothy Putnam Senior would have been 45 and Junior would have only been 17. This could be either one. ( Ticonderoga is about 100 miles from Charlestown)

The confusion comes from the National Archives listing of Pensions and rolls from Massachusetts.

I was reading on line a history of Charlestown by Rev. Henry H. Saunderson that may or may not answer my question: is the Timothy listed for Massachusetts the same Timothy listed in New Hampshire.

and while the decision
of His Majesty was still pending, the General Court of Massachusetts Bay granted above thirty townships between the rivers Merrimac and Connecticut ; which to\^uships upon the running (that is determining)
of the divisional line in 1738, fell within the Province of New Hampshire ; and among them were those granted under the designations No. 1, No. 2, No. 3, and No. 4 ; which are the present townships of
Chesterfield, Westmoreland, Walpole, and Charlestown ; which though they had fallen within the limits of New-Hampshire, were all subsequently settled in dependence upon their grants received from Massachusetts. The settlers therefore, as their grants had emanated from an authority which had no jurisdiction over the soil, had, as it was claimed, no valid title to their lands. And this they must have
known, as the final decree of his Majesty fixing the boundary line, bears date March 5th, 1740 ; and we find a petition of the proprietors of No. 4, dated Sept. 29th, 1740, to His Majesty, praying to be re-
annexed to the Massachusetts Province, to which they had supposed they belonged. This was before any considerable settlement had been made. But notwithstanding their title was uncertain, we find
that the settlement was still continued, though for the most part under different proprietors till 1753 ; when in consequence of the report of the Attorney and Solicitor General in relation to what was right and
proper to be done concerning those townships which had been granted by Massachusetts, in which it was substantially recommended, that proprietors who had made improvements on their lands, should be con-
firmed in the rights and privileges given them by their grants from that State, application was made by petition to New-Hampshire to that effect, which was readily and cheerfully granted. Thus Charles-
town was for between twelve and thirteen years after its settlement substantially a Massachusetts town.¹

A consideration may be that those listed in New Hampshire may have also been claimed by Massachusetts since many of them had resettled in New Hampshire from Massachusetts. Timothy Putnam Senior was born in Massachusetts and his father was from Danvers of Essex County. So possible because of close ties to the town they originated from could these men have moved about the country fighting in different regiments as the conflict continues? Also when we consider the designations during this period for the Colonies, Massachusetts Colony engages quite a large area.

Looking at the two depositions I read they specifically state Timothy Putnam of Danvers Massachusetts.

A Rufas Putnam claims that Timothy was with him at West Point (a battle?) for 3 months with Capt. Benjamin Peabody’s company of Col. N. Wade’s regiment in 1780.² That may have been the period that Benedict Arnold was in Command.

Then a Jonathan Porter of Danvers claims that Timothy Putnam was for 6 months in Rhode Island with him in Capt. Jeremiah Putnam’s company of Col Nathan Tyler’s regiment in 1779.³

I saw a painting online of General Rufus Putnam, was he the same Rufus on the pension documents for Timothy Putnam?

So was my Timothy so well known in his home town that he was reassigned to different companies during the war years that had men that knew him in Danvers and stated he was from there? Then again maybe I am looking at a cousin who has the same name that was still residing in Danvers. What do you think?

While I may not have learned if the records in at the National Archives are for my Timothy Putnam the challenge brought  about a great benefit in learning a lot more about the Revolutionary war period, battles, and individuals that  I had previously never pursued. Thanks Amy Johnson Crow for these challenges.

sources: 1. HISTORY OF CHARLESTOWN, NEW-HAMPSHIRE, THE OLD NO. 4, EMBRACING THE PART BORNE BY ITS INHABITANTS IN THE INDIAN, FRENCH AND REVOLUTIONARY WARS, AND THE VERMONT CONTROVERSY.
ALSO GENEALOGIES AND SKETCHES OF FAMILIES, FROM ITS SETTLEMENT TO 1876.
By Rev. Henry H. Saunderson.
PRINTED FOR THE TOWN BY THE CLAREMONT MANUFACTURING COMPANY, CLAREMONT. N. H.
2. Deposition from Rufus Putnam

3. Deposition from Jonathan Porter

52 Ancestors- Our routes to the Gold Fields

During the “Gold Rush” we had two different family lines make the great migration to California. Joseph Putnam left Cambridge Massachusetts and traveled the sea route  down the eastern seaboard past Cuba, into the gulf arriving in Chagris, Panama and making the journey across the isthmus and up the west coast to California. Once in San Francisco he bought a row boat and rowed up the delta to the Molkaleme river to what would become his mining claim. The other was George Washington Francis who left Zanesville, Ohio and traveled overland to the mining town of Hangtown (Placerville).

Just getting to the expected riches in the California foothills must have felt like traveling halfway around the world. If you had money and were in a hurry to get a prime mining site what route would you have chosen?

Painting by A.D.O. Browere Crocker Art Museum, Saramento "Crossing the Isthmus about 1860

Painting by A.D.O. Browere
Crocker Art Museum, Saramento
“Crossing the Isthmus about 1860

 

 

Routes to California 1849

Routes to California 1849

In the early 1850’s a trek across the isthmus of Panama was the preferred route for settlers headed to California from the Boston Area. The trip around the horn would have been 15,687 miles and taken an average of 6-9 months on a whaler. The trip that utilized the trek across the isthmus of Panama was about 6,000 miles and would have taken approximately four months utilizing a ship out off Boston or New York,  mules and carts across the isthmus to Panama City, and then a ship from Panama City up to San Francisco. To have traveled the shortest route in miles would have been overland approx. 3,000 miles, from Massachusetts or Ohio to Council Bluffs Iowa then 6 to 9 months by wagon train to San Francisco.

Apparently one had the money for the sea route while the other was taking the cheapest route.

from a Journal written and illustrated by Alexander Van Valen http://americanhistory.si.edu/onthewater/exhipition/2_4.html

from a Journal written and illustrated by Alexander Van Valen
http://americanhistory.si.edu/onthewater/exhipition/2_4.html

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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