Category Archives: Geneology

Stories Ahead

A new feature of MaineLife highlights some genealogy stories. Today seems as good as any to share the first family story.

On this day in history, John Coggeshall (_____-1647) was on a committee to lay out land in Portsmouth, Rhode Island. Who was this guy, you may ask? John was MaineLife’s 10th-great-grandfather who came from England to Massachusetts in 1632 on the “Lyon” with his wife Mary and three children. Can you even imagine crossing the ocean with a young family in those days? Definitely not a Carnival Cruise!

This picture came from Robert Darrell on ancestry.com. Though not very clear, the portrait and frame suggest that John was a man of some importance, not surprising given his positions in local government wherever he lived.

John was a textile merchant, and the family first settled in Roxbury before moving into Boston where John served as a selectman, an auditor, an assessor, court deputy, and on a surveying committee – a pretty active member of the community. Oh, John also supported public education.

In 1637 or 1638, the Boston General Court banished John and others for their support of Anne Hutchinson who believed in preaching good deeds rather than being saved by grace alone. Hutchinson and her supporters established the settlement of Portsmouth, Rhode Island.

In 1638, John moved his family to Portsmouth, Rhode Island where he continued his civic involvement and good deeds. It was on May 20, 1638.that he is known to have served on the land surveying committee. John also served as treasurer, auditor, moderator, a church elder, and the governor’s assistant.

Descendants of John and his wife read like this: their daughter Anne Coggeshall > Waite Easton > Patience Carr > Edward Estes > Silas Estes > Prudence Estes > Jackson Davis > Ernest Davis > Lillian Davis. Lillian was MaineLife’s great-grandmother.

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