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Ancestors of John Edwin and Lavinia (Manchester) Almy

As promised in the last newsletter, here are some facts about the ancestors of John Edwin and Lavinia (Manchester) Almy by Dorothy Seabury Hornus


After studying the Mary Hannah ALMY Sampler, let us take a glimpse at who some of the ancestors of the parents, John Edwin and Lavinia (Manchester) ALMY were. As we wind through the branches of the family trees of those ancestors we will meet some startling people worth pausing a while to meet and mention, as you will see!

The ancestry of John Edwin (6) ALMY: (Sanford (5) and Lydia (5) (Gray) ALMY; John (4) and Hannah (Cook) ALMY; Job (3) and Bridget (Sanford) ALMY; Job (2) and Mary (Unthank) ALMY; William (1) and Audrey (Barlow) Almy of Lynn and Sandwich, MA. John Edwin was a Yeoman on a large farm in Little Compton, RI, and served as a Deacon:

Notable connections through the female allied families of John Edwin are: his paternal grandmother, Bridget SANFORD, was a descendant of several Colonial Governors of Rhode Island, namely, John SANFORD, and his son Peleg SANFORD; William CODDINGTON, and John COGGESHALL. Bridget SANFORD was the granddaughter of William HUTCHINSON, also a Colonial Governor of RI, and his famous wife was none other than Anne Marbury HUTCHINSON of royal ancestry to all the Houses of Western Europe. She was the leader of the Antinomian movement in Boston. She and her followers became entangled with the religious leader, Cotton Mather and the Massachusetts Bay government. Ann was a prisoner for almost a year in Boston where her 16th child was born and died. As the group was comprised of persons of wealth and power, they escaped being condemned to death, but were banned from Boston and exiled.

They proceeded to settle on Aquidneck Island, named Rhode Island by the Dutch Master Block when he explored Narragansett Bay earlier. The eighteen heads of families were the signers of the historic "Portsmouth Compact", at the place now marked by a large rock and metal plaque. They were able to settle on this land with the help of Roger Williams negotiations with the Narragansett Indians, with whom he had cultivated a good relationship during his travels just prior to his own banishment from Salem, Massachusetts Bay Colony with some others of Baptist faith.

Later, William ALMY, his family, as well as the other families you find among the Almy allied families of Portsmouth, Tiverton, and Little Compton, would follow in migrating from different Plymouth Colony towns to Rhode Island.
On John Edwin's maternal side, he was grandson of Pardon (4) GRAY (Philip (3), Edward (2-1) GRAY of Plymouth and Tiverton; and Mary (5) BROWN of Tiverton. Pardon GRAY was a wealthy, prominent landholder and farmer in Tiverton and Little Compton. During the Revolutionary War, he served in the Rhode Island militia, first as a Major, then as Lt. Col., and acted as Commissary Officer for the Rhode Island troops during the Battle of Rhode Island. The Marquis de Lafayette himself, paid a visit to Col. Gray's home at Tiverton.

Col Pardon GRAY's mother was Sarah Corey, her grandmother, Sarah TABER, daughter of Philip Taber and Mary (3), John (2) Francis (1) COOKE of the MAYFLOWER. John (2) COOKE's wife was Sarah (2), Richard (1) WARREN of the MAYFLOWER.

Lydia (Gray) ALMY's mother, Mary BROWN has ancestry to William WHITE of the MAYFLOWER through her mother, Sarah (5) William (4), Silvanus (3), Peregrine (2), William (1) WHITE. Mary's father was John (4), Tobias (3) , William(2), Nicholas (1) BROWN,

Therefore, any descendant of Sanford (5) ALMY and his wife Lydia (5) GRAY, has ancestry to three Mayflolwer passengers, several Colonial Governors of Rhode Island, and royal ancestry.

Next, let us erxamine the ancestry of John Edwin ALMY's wife , Lavinia (7) MANCHESTER, the only daughter of Deacon James and Hannah (Burroughs) MANCHESTER. Her father, James (6), Philip (5), Peleg (4) John (3-2)., Thomas (1) MANCHESTER, was a Deacon at the Old Stone Church, Adamsville, R.I., and a yeoman.

Her mother, Hannah (6) BURROUGHS (b. 25 Jul 1778 - d. 12 Mar 1839) was the daughter of Elder Peleg (5) BURROUGHS (b. 1760 - d. 7 Aug 1800), son of Samuel (4), Thomas (3) James (1) BURROUGHS, OF Newport and Wessterly, RI. Elder Peleg BURROUGHS was the colorful self-named (Humbly Bold Baptist Minister" who came from Newport with his wife, Kezia (4) BURDICK) (Wid. WEST, daughter of Hubbard (3-2) Robert (1) BURDICK of Westerly, R.I. to preach in Tiverton, RI.

He kept journals of all his visits to his parishioners, noting births, deaths and funerals, sermons, etc. The Journal for the period 1788-1798 was handed down through subsequent generations to Alice Cline (d. Sep 1982), a descendant of Peleg's daughter, Phebe. She transcribed the manuscript of the journal she had inherited. Another journal, or part of that one, is held at the Newport Historical Society. Members of the Rhode Island Genealogical Society took interest in her portion of the journal (1788-1798) and published it as a book, the first one published by the Society in 1981. As many Tiverton vital statistics did not always get recorded during the early years, by carefully going over the record of daily travels and ministries of Elder Peleg Burroughs' journal, one can often find valuable information that does not appear elsewhere. I was able to reconstruct most of the Joshua Dwelley family of Tiverton, RI by extracting data from this book and from Tiverton cemetery records. However, the mystery of whether Joshua had two wives (Elizabeth Howard, record of marriage at Swansea, MA in 1706), and perhaps Second, Elizabeth Rounds, at Tiverton, as cited in the Coggeshall Family Genealogy. There is no record of any second marriage of Joshua, and I could not find an Elizabeth Rounds whose dates would fit the period.

Elder Peleg was a descendant of Richard Warren of the Mayflower as James (1) BURROUGHS married Sarah (2) Richard (1) CHURCH, daughter of Richard (1) CHURCH and Elizabeth (2) Richard (1) WARREN of the MAYFLOWER. Peleg BURROUGH's mother was Mary GREENE, who descended from John GREEN of Newport, R.I. Other progenitors of allied families of the Burroughs family included John GREENMAN, John PECKHAM, Thomas CLARK; James WEEDEN, Jeremiah CLARKE (also a Colonial Governor of RI, and of royal descent), and John ODLIN (AUDLIN/AUDLEY), of Boston and Newport, a member (Amorer) of the Ancient and Honorable Artillery of Massachusetts.

Keziah (BURDICK) BURROUGHS was of Westerly, R.I., daughter of Hubbard BURDICK and Avis (3), John (2), Daniel (1) LEWIS. Progenitors of her allied families included most all the 7th Day Baptist ministers of Westerly and Hopkinton, R.I.; Robert BURDICK, James HUBBARD, Richard MAGGESON (MAXON); Joseph CLARKE; Samuel HUBBARD; and Hugh MOSHER

SOURCES for further reading and research:

1 - "Little Compton Families" by Benjamin F. Wilbour - published 1967 Little Compton Historical Society.

2 - James Arnolds Vital Records of Newport County, Vol. 6

3- "Genealogical Dictionary of Rhode Island" , John O. Austin, 1978 edition with corrections from The American Genealogist.

4 - "Peleg Burroughs's Journal 1778- 1798", published 1981 by the Rhode Island Genealogical Society.

5 - For royal lineages of Ann Marbury Hutchinson and Jeremy Clarke; "Ancestral Roots of Sixty Colonists Who Came to New England between 1623 and 1650" - Frederick Lewis Weis, w/additions and corrections-6th Edition or later - The Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc.

FOOTNOTE: As a member of the RI Genealogical Society, I sent for a copy of Elder Burrough's Journal 1778-1798 in 1982 when it was published by the Society. In my letter to Ruth Wilder Sherman, who was in charge of its distribution, I mentioned I was a descendant of Hannah Burroughs, therefore particularly interested in the book. Ruth Wilder Sherman wrote to Alice Cline, owner of the manuscript, and informed her that she had found another descendant of Elder Peleg Burroughs. They were excited, as I was the fourth branch of the Elder Peleg's family they had heard from at that time. Mrs. Cline was from one of them, being a descendant of Peleg's daughter, Phebe. Another was Ann Allen of Fall River who descended from Peleg's daughter Anna. I do not know who the fourth person was.

I had already read a typed manuscript of a portion of Elder Peleg Burrough's Journal at the Newport Historical Society in 1979 from another period, and had found mention of "father Burdick" from time to time throughout, and I thought he must have been referring to his father-in-law, and I assumed the maiden name of his wife, Keziah must have been Burdick. She married Peleg Burroughs as a widow. The notation: "(of J West)" was in a book of Acrostics that Mrs. Cline had, otherwise Keziah's maiden name and first husband's name was a mystery for a while. She asked me how I had picked up on her maiden name and the name West. Mrs. Cline later wrote to me and stated that the portion of the journal at the Historical Society is another part of the Journal and not the part she owned. The first name of her first husband is still unknown, and the marriage record cannot be found anywhere. It was presumed by the ladies that () West had been a seafarer who never returned, and Keziah had to wait to be declared a widow. Mrs. Cline also mentioned that there is still a part of the Journal missing, and there had been an earthquake in Rhode Island during that missing time, and having the impressions of Elder Burroughs would have been interesting. Perhaps another of his descendants holds it?

Mrs. Cline and Mrs. Sherman wrote a few letters to me. I was living in Nuernberg, Germany at the time. Mrs. Cline informed me that she also had a small book of Acrostics that elder Peleg Burroughs liked to write, and some Riddles as well. She shared a copy of the Riddle concerning his daughters' names (He wrote an Acrostic for each one), and a copy of the Acrostic for his daughter, Hannah, my ancestor. I will share it with you here (in the next issue of the newsletter).

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