Captain Thomas Bradbury

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Captain Thomas Bradbury, son of Wymond Bradbury and Elizabeth Whitgift, was born probably shortly before his baptism at Wicken Bonhunt, Essex, England, 28 February 1611.1,2 He died at Salisbury, Essex Co., Massachusetts, 16 March 1694/95.2,1

Thomas married Mary Perkins, daughter of John Perkins and Judith Gater, about 1636.2,1,3

Early in 1634, Thomas Bradbury appeared at Agamenticus, (now York), Maine as the agent or steward of Sir Ferdinando Gorges, the proprietor of the Province of Maine. Thomas was one of the original proprietors of the ancient town of Salisbury, Massachusetts, one of the earliest settlers there, and was one of the foremost citizens there for a period of more than half a century. He was made a freeman in 1640, held at various times the offices of schoolmaster of the town, town clerk, justice of the peace, deputy to the general court, county recorder, associate judge and captain of the military company, and always filled these important positions with credit to himself and satisfaction of the public. He wrote an easy, graceful and legible hand, and had a clear and concise style of expression. His chirography may stiill be seen in numerous official documents on file in the archives of Essex Co. Massachusetts and also at Exeter, NH. In 1636, Thomas became a grantee of Salisbury, and married his wife.

Thomas was appointed first clerk of the writs in Salisbury in 1641. In 1651, he was chosen a deputy to the General Court, and again successively in 1652, 1656, 1657, 1660, 1661, and 1666. In 1654, 1656, 1658, and 1659, he was appointed on various committees to settle differences concerning lands, to fix boundaries, and locate grants. As agent for Gorges, he executed some of the earliest deeds recorded in the York Co. records. An indenture made 5 May 1636, reads: "Thomas Bradbury, Gent., now agent of Sir Ferdinando Georges, Knight, confirmed unto Edward Johnson for the proper use of John Treworgy of Dartmouth, merchant, the use of five hundred acres of land, conditioned to pay annually one hundred of merchantable cod dried and well conditioned, as an acknowledgement of the royalty of Sir Ferdinando Gorges, Knight, to Sir Ferdinando Gorges or his assigns, at or upon the Feast of Saint Michaels, the Arch High Angel." This sufficiently establishes the fact that Mr. Bradbury was the recognized agent of the proprietor of the Province of Maine, granted together with New Hampshire, by royal patent in 1622, to Gorges and mason, and taken as his portion by Gorges, in 1629.

During the witchcraft trial of his wife, 28 Jul 1692, he testified: "Concerning my beloved wife, Mary Bradbury, this is what I have to say: We have been married fifty-five years, and she hath been a loving and faithful wife unto me unto this day. She hath been wonderful laborious, diligent and industrious in her place and employment about the bringing up of our family which have been eleven children of our own, and four gandchildren. She was both prudent and provident, of a cheerful spirit, liberal and charitable. She being now very aged and weak, and grieved under afflictions, may not be able to speak much for herself, not being so free of speech as some might be. I hope her life and conversation among her neighbors has been such as gives a better or more real testimony than can be expressed by words."1,4,5,6

Family

Mary Perkins b. 3 Sep 1615, d. 20 Dec 1700
Children
  • Wymond Bradbury1 b. 1 Apr 1637, d. 7 Apr 1669
  • Judith Bradbury1 b. 2 Oct 1638, d. 24 Jan 1699/0
  • Thomas Bradbury1 b. 28 Jan 1641
  • Mary Bradbury+2,1 b. 17 Mar 1642/43, d. 29 May 1724
  • Jane Bradbury1 b. 11 May 1645
  • Jacob Bradbury1 b. 17 Jun 1647, d. 1669
  • William Bradbury1 b. 15 Sep 1649, d. 4 Dec 1678
  • Elizabeth Bradbury1 b. 7 Nov 1651
  • John Bradbury1 b. 20 Apr 1654, d. 24 Nov 1678
  • Ann Bradbury1 b. 16 Apr 1656, d. 1659
  • Jabez Bradbury1 b. 27 Jun 1658, d. 28 Apr 1677

Citations

  1. [S95] John Brooks Threlfall, The Ancestry of Thomas Bradbury (1611 - 1695) and His Wife Mary (Perkins) Bradbury (1615 - 1700) of Salisbury, Massachusetts, 3rd ed. (Madison, Wisconsin: p.p., 2006), 1-4, further cited as Threlfall, The Ancestry of Thomas Bradbury.
  2. [S2053] Robert Charles Anderson, George F. Sanborn Jr. and Melinde Lutz Sanborn, The Great Migration: Immigrants To New England, 1634-1635, 7 vols. (Boston, Massachusetts: New England Historic Genealogical Society, 1999-2011), 1:375-381, further cited as Anderson, et al., The Great Migration.
  3. [S1872] Clarence Almon Torrey, New England Marriages Prior to 1700, 3 vols. (Boston, Massachusetts: New England Historic Genealogical Society, 2011), 187, further cited as Torrey, New England Marriages (2011).
  4. [S94] Mary Lovering Holman, "The Bradbury Family," The American Genealogist 18 (Apr 1942): 220-226 & 19 (Jul 1942): 36-43, at 36-39, further cited as Holman, "Bradbury Family."
  5. [S96] John M. Bradbury, Some of the Descendants of Thomas Bradbury of Agamenticus (York) in 1634 and of Salisbury, MA in 1638 with Brief Sketches of the Bradbury's of England (Portland, Maine: Brown Thurston & Co., 1890), 59-64, further cited as Bradbury, Bradbury Memorial.
  6. [S520] Frederick Lewis Weis, Walter Lee Sheppard Jr., William R. Beall and Kaleen E. Beall, Ancestral Roots of Certain American Colonists Who Came to America before 1700: Lineages from Alfred the Great, Charlemagne, Malcolm of Scotland, Robert the Strong, and Other Historical Individuals, 8th ed. (Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., 2004), 246A-42, further cited as Weis, Sheppard, Beall, and Beall, Ancestral Roots, 8th ed.