From the files of Stephen M. Lawson
The origins of Hugh PARSONS of RI are not presently known.
A thorough review of available documents leads to the conclusion
that there were three separate men named Hugh PARSONS living
in Springfield, MA, Watertown, MA and Portsmouth, RI in the mid-1600s.
A brief narrative on the family is found in Ancestral Lines,
Third Edition, by Carl Boyer, 3rd (Santa Clarita, CA 1998),
Hugh PARSONS - b. probably in Wales or England; d. early
1684, Portsmouth, RI. His will
was dated Jan. 11, 1684 and proved Mar. 14, 1684, naming his wife,
grandson Hugh BAILEY, daughter Hannah MATTESON, granddaughter
Hannah MATTESON, and his wife's two daughters living on Long Island
(Susannah CARPENTER and Elizabeth DOTY). Hugh is first found at
Portsmouth, RI in 1658, when he was appointed a juror. A deed
dated on Jul. 3, 1662 names his wife as Elizabeth. Hugh was a
freeman in 1663, a member of a troop of horse in 1667, and deputy
in 1678. One researcher states that Hugh Parsons married Elizabeth,
widow of John WOOD of Portsmouth, RI, and that Elizabeth was the
mother of Hugh PARSONS' two daughters. However, Clarence Almon
Torrey gives 1655 as the death year of John WOOD, which would
place the suggested marriage of his widow to Hugh PARSONS afte
the estimated birth years of Hugh's two daughters.
Several earlier publications identify his wife as Elizabeth
(b. 1613; d. after 1684), widow of William ENGLAND. William and
Elizabeth ENGLAND had children: William (b. 1641); Josiah; Eleanor
married Jul 27, 1665 Jeremiah WESTCOTT; Susannah married Ephraim
CARPENTER; and Elizabeth married Isaac DOTY of Oyster Bay. The
family of Elizabeth ENGLAND suggests that she married Hugh no
earlier than 1650, but certainly by 1662. Since Hugh's daughter
Grace was born by about 1645, and daughter Hannah, whose first
child was born in 1670, was probably born by 1650, it appears
that they were children of a first marriage by Hugh. The provision
in his will that the residue of his estate go to Elizabeth's daughters
suggests that the estate included property brought to the marriage
by the widow Elizabeth ENGLAND. This conjecture is supported by
the sale of 18 acres of land in 1662 by Hugh and his wife Elizabeth,
and by Hugh referring to Elizabeth as his "present wife"
in the 1672 bond addendum.
Daughters of Hugh Parsons
- Grace - d. after 1677, RI. The birth of her fifth child in
1665 suggests that she was born by about 1645. Grace married
first William BAILEY (d. by 1670), supposedly the son of William
BAILEY and grandson of Palmer BAILEY. Grace married second 1674
Thomas LAWTON (b. Jun. 26, 1655, Portsmouth, Newport Co., RI),
who had four children by his first wife Elizabeth SALSBURIE.
Children of Grace and William BAILEY: John married Sutton; Joseph
married Sarah DUNN; Edward married Frances; Hugh married first
Anna, and second Abigail WILLIAMS; Stephen married Susanna; and
- Hannah - b. probably at Portsmouth,
RI; d. after 1693, RI. Married Henry MATTESON.
Henry and Hannah (Parsons) Matteson
Henry MATTESON - b. about 1646, Ireland; d. 1690, East
Greenwich, RI. Arrived in Rhode Island about 1666, living on Prudence
Island in Narrgansett Bay until after King Philip's War. Settled
at East Greenwich, obtaining 100 acres of land Jun. 12, 1678 and
selling it on Mar. 17, 1682 to David SHIPPEE. Deputy in 1685.
Married in 1670.
Hannah PARSONS - b. probably at Portsmouth, RI; d. after
1693, possibly in RI. She married second on Aug. 9, 1693 Charles
HAZELTON, Sr. at East Greenwich, RI. Daughter of Hugh
Children of Henry and Hannah Matteson
- Henry - b. 1670, East Greenwich,
RI; d. Apr. 13, 1752, West Greenwich, RI.
- Thomas - b. 1672, East Greenwich, RI; d. Jan. 19, 1740. Will
proved Jan. 28, 1740, with estate inventoried at £452.07.1
1/2. He was married Nov. 14, 1695, at E. Greenwich, by John HEATH,
Justice, to Mary (or Martha) SHIPPEE (b. 1667, MA), daughter
of David SHIPPEE and Margaret SCRANTON. Children of Thomas and
Mary MATTESON: Deliverance married Ezekiel BAKER; Elizabeth married
Henry JOSLIN (their son John married Joanna ANDREW); Thomas married
first Susanna BRIGGS, and second Elizabeth MATTESON; Joseph married
Martha GREENE; Henry; Mercy married Francis BRIGGS; and Mary.
- Joseph - b. 1678, East Greenwich, RI; d. 1758. Married Rachel
WEAVER, daughter of Capt. Clement WEAVER and Rachel ANDREW, and
half-sister of Judith, who married Henry MATTESON. Their four
sons received land at East Greenwich from Joseph. Children of
Joseph and Rachel MATTESON: Joseph married Lydia MILLARD; Jonathan
married Phoebe GREENE; David married Sarah COREY (daughter of
William COREY and Elizabeth); and Josiah married Mercy NICHOLS.
- Francis - b. Mar. 15, 1680, East Greenwich, RI; d. 1750.
Will proved Apr. 28, 1750, with estate inventoried at £2,530.03.09,
including a saw mill and land bequeathed to each son. He married
May 22, 1700, E. Greenwich, RI Sarah NICHOLS, daughter of Richard
NICHOLS and Phoebe. Children of Francis and Sarah MATTESON: Sarah
married William COREY (son of William COREY and Elizabeth); John
married Mary ARNOLD; Hannah married Pasco WHITFORD; Francis married
Dinah TIBBETTS; Henry married first Rachel GREENE, and second
Comfort PEARCE; Thomas married first Sarah JOHNSON, and second
Susannah MATTESON, possibly daughter of Thomas and Susanna (BRIGGS)
MATTESON; Job married first Elizabeth GREENE; Elizabeth did not
marry; Jane did not marry; and Phoebe married Increase GREENE.
- Hannah - b. RI. No further records found.
- Hezekiah - b. 1684, RI; d. 1752, West Greenwich, RI. Will
dated Apr. 8, 1752 and proved Apr. 25, 1752, with estate inventoried
at £782.04.08. Married Margaret WESTCOTT (b. Mar. 8, 1702;
d. Apr. 12, 1753, West Greenwich, RI), daughter of Zerobabel
WESTCOTT and Mary PARSONS. Children of Hezekiah and Margaret
MATTESON: Abraham married Freelove PHILLIPS; Hezekiah; Amos married
first Fear SWEET, and second Susannah; Samuel married Clarissa;
Zerobabel married Mehitable DWINNELL; Lojea married Timothy CARPENTER;
Catherine; and Ann.
- Josiah - b. 1685, RI; d. 1754. Married Rosannah WESTCOTT,
daughter of Zerobabel WESTCOTT and Mary PARSONS. Children of
Josiah and Rosannah MATTESON: John; David; Lorany; Nathan died
young; James; Nathan; and William.
Mr. Andrews and Rachel
Rachel - b. probably at Newport, RI; d. after Nov. 2,
1697, probably at East Greenwich, RI. Married first Mr. ANDREWS,
who apparently died between 1674 and 1677. By her first marriage,
she was the mother of Judith (ANDREWS) MATTESON. Rachel
was chosen as a juror on Feb. 24, 1684, and was named executrix
of the estate of Clement WEAVER in 1691. She married second, May
6, 1678 in RI, Clement WEAVER. She married third, probably in
1692, William BENNETT.
Clement WEAVER - b. 1647, probably Newport, RI; d. Sep. 8,
1691 (inv.), East Greenwich, RI. Step-father of Judith (ANDREWS)
MATTESON. Son of Clement WEAVER and Mary FREEBORN, and grandson
of Clement and Rebecca (HOLBROOK) WEAVER, and of William and Mary
FREEBORN. Freeman at Newport on May 4, 1675, and at East Greenwich
on Oct. 31, 1677. Clement's will, made by the Town Council on
Nov. 23, 1691, provided for each of his children and for "Juda
Androes, £5 ... at or before the 24th of June next."
Estate inventoried on Sep. 8, 1691 at £151.02.06, clearly
indicating his occupation of farmer: 2 oxen, 5 cows, 9 heifers,
2 yearlings, 3 calves, 38 sheep, 8 lambs, 2 horses, 3 mares, 2
colts, 10 lean swine, 6 pigs, 3 shoats, 59 cheeses, pair of stillyards,
2 spinning wheels, loom, 2 ploughs, 6 hives of bees, carpenter's
tools, pewter, etc. Perhaps the Capt. WEAVER serving in the 1690
expedition of Phips against Quebec. The name of his first wife,
whom he married about 1668, is not known. On Oct. 24, 1677 Clement
was indicted for having on Sep. 26, 1677 declared himself married
to Rachel ANDREWS at the house of Joseph CLARKE; they then
married May 6, 1678 at Newport, RI.
Children of Clement Weaver and his first
- Clement - b. Feb. 19, 1669, Newport, RI; d. Feb. 19, 1738,
East Greenwich, RI. Freeman 1690. A receipt dated Nov. 2, 1697
identifies his step mother Rachel ANDREWS WEAVER BENNETT. Married
Jan. 1, 1691 Hannah LONG (d. 1759, East Greenwich, RI), daughter
of Philip LONG and Hannah. Clement's will was dated Oct. 16,
1736 and proved Mar. 25, 1738. Hannah's will was dated Dec. 5,
1757 and proved Mar. 31, 1759. Children of Clement and Hannah
WEAVER: Clement died young; Alice probably died young; Jonathan
married; Clement; Mary married her cousin John, son of William
WEAVER; and Gideon.
- William - b. 1671, RI; d. May 22, 1718, East Greenwich, RI.
Estate inventoried Jul. 14, 1718 at £127.17.08: cider mill,
pewter, pair of oxen, 4 steers, 4 cows, 2 two years, 3 calves,
horse, mare, colt, 12 sheep, 10 hogs. Married Dec. 17, 1693 Elizabeth
HARRIS (b. 1673; d. 1748, RI). Her will was dated Apr. 8, 1745
and proved Sep. 24, 1748. Children of William and Elizabeth WEAVER:
William; Clement married; Joseph married Mary MATTESON, daughter
of Henry and Judith (ADNREWS-WEAVER) MATTESON; Thomas died young;
John married his cousin Mary, daughter of Clement WEAVER; Alice
married Samuel BASSETT; Thomas; Benjamin; and Harris.
Child of Rachel Andrews
- Judith ANDREWS - b. Jun. 24, 1674,
Newport, RI; d. after 1751, RI. Married Henry
Children of Clement and Rachel Weaver
- Joseph - b. Dec. 4, 1679, East Greenwich, RI; d. Jul. 11,
1751, East Greenwich, RI. Freeman 1702; deputy 1716-20. Estate
inventoried Jul. 23, 1751 at £1,125.16.06, including £655
in bonds, a court book, and 2 bibles. Married Feb. 21, 1706 Elizabeth
SWEET, daughter of Daniel and Eleanor. Children of Joseph and
Elizabeth WEAVER: Benjamin; Mary; Elizabeth; and Rachel.
- Benjamin - b. say 1680/1. Married Mercy. Named as step-son
of William BENNETT in proceedings in Mar. 1702.
- Alice - b. say 1682. Reportedly the oldest of the three girls.
- Rachel - b. Dec. 24, 1684, East Greenwich, RI. Married Joseph
MATTESON (b. 1678, East Greenwich, RI; d. 1758), son of Henry
and Hannah (PARSONS) MATTESON, and brother of Henry, who married
Judith ANDREWS-WEAVER. Children of Rachel and Joseph MATTESON:
Joseph married Lydia MILLARD; Jonathan married Phoebe GREENE;
David married Sarah COREY; and Josiah married Mercy NICHOLS.
- Rebecca - b. about 1686, East Greenwich, RI; d. about 1715/6,
Newport, RI. Married about 1714 at East Greenwich, RI, Capt.
Daniel VAUGHAN (b. Mar. 17, 1685; d. Dec. 25, 1717, at sea off
NC coast), son of Daniel VAUGHAN and Susanna GRIMES. Child of
Rebecca and Daniel VAUGHAN: Rebecca married Gideon CORNELL.
Capt. Henry and Judith (Andrews-Weaver)
Henry MATTESON - b. 1670, East Greenwich, RI; d. Apr.
13, 1752, West Greenwich, RI. Deputy 1701. Son of Henry
MATTESON and Hannah PARSONS. Will dated Jun. 18, 1751 and
proved Apr. 25, 1752, with estate inventoried at £407.11.06,
£129.16.00 being in bonds and money. His will mentions wife
Judith, sons Henry and Jonathan (and four other sons unamed),
daughters Mary WEAVER and Judith ANDREWS (deceased), and heirs
of Judith ANDREWS. Married Apr. 19, 1693, East Greenwich, RI,
by John HEATH, Justice.
Judith ANDREWS-WEAVER - b. Jun. 24, 1674, Newport, RI;
d. after 1751, RI. Daughter of Mr. Andrews
and Rachel and step-daughter of Capt. Clement WEAVER.
Children of Henry and Judith Matteson
- Judith - b. Oct. 16, 1694,
East Greenwich, RI; d. by Jun. 1751, RI. Married Charles
- Henry - b. Apr. 22, 1696, East Greenwich, RI; d. Mar. 2,
1754, West Greenwich, RI. He was married Dec. 15, 1720, at East
Greenwich, RI, by John SPENCER, Justice, to Ruth SWEET, daughter
of Henry SWEET. Children of Henry and Ruth MATTESON: Henry married
Margaret GREENE; Ruth married John GREENE; Fair; John married
Comfort WEAVER; Caleb died young; James married his first cousin
Hannah (ANDREW) SWEET ANDREW, daughter of Charles ANDREW and
Judith MATTESON; Dinah married Jonathan MATTESON, son of Jonathan
and Alice (SWEET) MATTESON; Nathan married Freelove BOWEN; and
Thankful married William WAITE.
- Jonathan - b. Jun. 6, 1701, East Greenwich, RI; d. 1784.
Will dated Dec. 7, 1780. He was married Jan. 31, 1722/3, at East
Greenwich, RI, by Thomas SPENCER, Justice, to Alice SWEET, daughter
of Henry SWEET. Children of Jonathan and Alice MATTESON: Alice
married Joseph WEAVER, son of Joseph and Mary (MATTESON) WEAVER;
Mary married Benjamin WEAVER, son of Joseph and Mary (MATTESON)
WEAVER; Hannah married John HALL; Jonathan married Dinah MATTESON,
daughter of Henry and Ruth (SWEET) MATTESON; and David married
- Mary - b. Feb. 13, 1703/4, East Greenwich, RI; d. 1753, Coventry,
RI. Married Nov. 21, 1723, East Greenwich, RI Joseph WEAVER,
son of William WEAVER and Elizabeth HARRIS. Children of Mary
and Joseph WEAVER: Joseph married Alice MATTESON, daughter of
Jonathan and Alice (SWEET) MATTESON; Mary married Isaac GREENE;
Katherine married Mansir COOPER; Benjamin married Mary MATTESON,
daughter of Jonathan and Alice (SWEET) MATTESON; Andras; William
married Mary MATTESON; Judith died in infancy; John married Susannah
CARR; Thomas; Rufus married Hannah WILLIAMS; and Elizabeth.
- John - b. Oct. 27, 1706, East Greenwich, RI; d. Jan. 23,
1754, East Greenwich, RI. He was married Mar. 30, 1732, at East
Greenwich, RI, by John SPENCER, Justice, to Elizabeth HUNT. Children
of John and Elizabeth MATTESON: Sarah married Mr. HALL; John
married Martha PHILLIPS; Thomas died young; Henry; Job married
Deliverance COMSTOCK; Joshua died young; Abel married Amy HALL,
daughter of Christopher and Roxanna (MATTESON-SWEET) HALL; and
Thomas died young.
- Sarah - b. Apr. 18, 1709, East Greenwich, RI. Her first child
was born out of wedlock. Married Dec. 22, 1734, East Greenwich,
RI Timothy SWEET, probably the son of Richard SWEET. Children
of Sarah and Timothy SWEET: Roxanna married Christopher HALL;
Levinia married William BRIGGS; and Peleg.
- James - b. Mar. 20, 1712, East Greenwich, RI; d. Feb. 16,
1754, East Greenwich, RI. He was married Mar. 2, 1738, at East
Greenwich, RI, by John SPENCER, Justice, to Enfield GREENE, daughter
of John GREENE. Children of James and Enfield MATTESON: Uriah
married Waite SWEET; Silas married Patience HALL, daughter of
Christopher and Roxanna (MATTESON-SWEET) HALL; Anna married Mr.
MANCHESTER; and Sarah died young.
- Elizabeth - b. Dec. 15, 1714, East Greenwich, RI. This child
is also reportedly named Hezekiah.
- Ebenezer - b. Mar. 15, 1718, East Greenwich, RI. He was married
Sep. 23, 1739, at East Greenwich, RI, by Thomas SPENCER, Justice,
to Susannah COMSTOCK, daughter of Thomas. Children of Ebenezer
and Susannah MATTESON: Martha married Thomas COMSTOCK; William
died in infancy; Edmund married Susannah; William; and Ebenezer.
- Hezekiah - b. 1720. He was married Oct. 18, 1739, at East
Greenwich, RI, by John SPENCER, Justice, to Mary SWEET, daughter
of Richard. Children of Hexekiah and Mary MATTESON: Judith married
Ishmael SPINK; George married Miss POTTER or Luranah; Jeremiah
married Ruth SWEET; Fear; Peleg married Barbara BOWEN; Freelove
married Abel AYLSWORTH; Mary married Thomas MANCHESTER; Sarah
married David MATTESON, son of John and Mary (ARNOLD) MATTESON;
Zilpha married John BRIGGS; Elizabeth; and Thomas married Thankful