Learning from the past, living in the moment, and leaving footprints for the future. Stories of lov

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Surname Saturday - Marbury

My great grandmother, Elsie Lovina Eldridge, left a half sheet of paper listing our descendants back to an Ann in history.  That was the only explaination she gave.  The only famous Ann our family could think of was Anne Marbury.  But I had a difficult time following the trail she had left behind until one day it finally connected and was quite amazed to discover that yes indeed, she was my 9th great grandmother.

How I descend from Anne:

Decendant of Anne Marbury
1.  Anne Marbury 1591-1642
     +William Hutchinson 1586-1642
 2. Susanna Hutchinson 1633-1713
    +John Cole 1625-1707
  3. Susanna Cole 1656-1726
     +Lieutenant Thomas Eldred 1648-1726
    4. Captain John Eldred 1670-1741
       +Mary Greene 1682-1747
      5. Samuel Eldred 1710-1778
         +Susannah Casey 1714-?
        6. Henry Eldridge 1758-1825
           + Elizabeth Tanner 1752-1844
          7. Josiah Tanner Crandall Eldridge 1782-?
             +Elsie Lewis 1785-1852
           8. Loomis Eldridge 1829-1872
              +Eliza Benson 1835-1880
             9. Elsie Lovina Eldridge 1870-1961
                +Emond Lewis Sterling 1869-1953
               10. Florence Eloise Helen Sterling 1904-1971
                + William Phillip Roesch 1893-1960
                  11. Elsie Louise Roesch 1927- still alive
                       + Robert Franklin Smith 1923-2008
                      12. Kathryn Marie Smith 1944-me
                           + Merrill Cecil Lockhard 1940-my hubby

Anne's history is rather lengthy, but a most remarkable one.  I am proud to call her grandmother.  (Information taken from historical records.)

Anne MARBURY, my 9th great grandmother, was the daughter of Reverend Francis MARBURY and Bridget DRYDEN, and was born in 1591 in Alford, Lincolnshire, England. She married William HUTCHINSON, a merchant, 9 Aug 1612 in London. She and her husband came to America in 1634 with Reverend John Lothrop's group on the ship "Griffin" and settled in Boston.
No stranger to religion, Anne grew up during the persecution of the Catholics and Separatists under Elizabeth and James I. Her father, Rev. Francis Marbury, had been imprisoned twice for preaching against the incompetence of English ministers, though he later became the rector of St. Martin's Vintry, London, rector of St. Pancras, Soper Lane, and finally rector of St. Margaret's, New Fish Street. He was holding two of these offices simultaneously when he died in 1611.
Anne began her involvement with religion quite innocently, using her intelligence to interpret the only book available to her - the Bible. She had followed her beloved minister, Reverend John Cotton, whose removal to New England a year earlier had been "a great trouble to me...I could not be at rest but I must come hither."

Anne Preaching
The religious climate in the Massachusetts Bay Colony was oppressive. As the colony took hold, ministers emphasized everyone's pious duty to pray, fast and discipline oneself. Noting that the male members of Boston's church met regularly after sermons to discuss the Bible, she started to hold similar meetings for women in her own home. At first the women discussed the previous Sunday's sermons, but before long Anne began telling them of her own beliefs which differed from those of the Boston ministers. She attracted hundreds of women - aided by her reputation as a skilled midwife - and men, too, soon joined her discussion group.

Brilliant, articulate and learned in the Bible and theology, she denied that conformity with the religious laws were a sign of godliness and insisted that true godliness came from inner experience of the Holy Spirit. Anne further exacerbated the local elders by claiming that only two Boston ministers were "elect" or saved, John Cotton and her brother-in-law, John Wheelwright.

Anne's weekly meetings took on a new importance. As many as eighty people filled her house, including "some of the magistrates, some gentlemen, some scholars and men of learning." Among them was Sir Henry Vane, who became governor of the colony in 1636. When Anne, with the aid of Governor Vane and John Cotton, attemtped to have her brother-in-law, John Wheelwright installed as minister of the Boston chuch, most of the congregation supported her. But the pastor of the church, Reverend John Wilson, gave a speech on the "inevitable dangers of separation" caused by the religious dissensions, and joined with John Winthrop in opposing her.

What started as a religious point of difference grew into a schism that threatened the political stability of the colony. To her opponents, questioning the church meant questioning the State. Anne's ideas were branded as the heresy of "Antinomianism" (a belief that Christians are not bound by moral law), and her followers became known as "Antinomians". Intended to be derogatory, the term was erroneously applied to Anne's followers, who did not believe that the inner Holy Spirit released them from obligation to moral law.

The colonial government moved to discipline her and her numerous followers in Boston. In May 1637, Vane lost the governorship to John Winthrop. To prevent new Antinomians from settling, he imposed a restriction on immigrants, among them Anne's brother and several of her friends. In August, eighty-two "heresies" committed by the Antinomians were read at a synod, and a ban was placed on all private meetings.

But Wheelwright continued to preach and Anne now held her meetings twice a week. In November, Winthop appearing before him, and though I must come to New England, yet I must not fear nor be dismayed," she said. "Therefore, take heed. For I know that for this that you goe about to doe unto me," she threatened, "God will ruin you and your posterity, and this whole State." Winthop immediately replied, "I am persuaded that the revelation she brings forth is delusion." The court voted to banish her from the colony, "as being a woman not fit for our society".

Anne on Trial
Wheelwright was exiled and shortly left for New Hampshire while Anne was put under house arrest for the winter to await a church trial in the spring. On March 15, 1638, Anne was brought to trial before the elders of the church of Boston. When her sons and sons-in-law tried to speak on her behalf, John Cotton cautioned them against "hindering" the work of God in healing her soul. To the women of the congregation he said to be careful in listening to her, "for you see she is but a woman and many unsound and  dangerous Principles are held by her."

Once her friend, Cotton now turned full force against her, attacking her meetings as a "promiscuous and filthie coming together of men and women without Distinction of Relation of Marriage," and accused her of believing in free love. "Your opinions frett like a Gangrene and spread like a Leprosie, and will eate out the very Bowells of Religion."

Then Reverend Wilson, whom she had once tried to evict from the Boston church, delivered her excommunication. "I doe cast you out and in the name of Christ I doe deliver you up to Satan, that you may learne no more to blaspheme, to seduce, and to lye."
"The Lord judgeth not as man judgeth," she retorted. "Better to be cast out of the church than to deny Christ."

Anne being Bannished
Banished from Boston, Anne Hutchinson with her husband, children and 60 followers settled in the land of Narragansetts, from whose chief, Miantonomah, they purchased the island of Aquidneck (Peaceable Island), now part of Rhode Island. In March, 1638 they founded the town of Pocasset, the Indian name for that locality; the name "Portsmouth" was given to the settlement in 1639. Here they established that colony's first civil government.

After William's death in 1642, Anne took her children, except for five of the eldest, to the Dutch colony in New York. But a few months later, fifteen Dutchmen were killed in a battle between Mahicans and the Mohawks. In August, 1643 the Mahicans raided the Hutchinson house and slaughtered Anne and five of her youngest children. Only one young daughter who was present, Susanna who was taken captive, survived. (Note: Many older sources insist that ALL of Anne's children except her daughter, Susanna were killed with her. This is simply not true. Sons Edward, Richard and Samuel were not present, nor were her eldest daughters, Faith and Bridget, most of whom left numerous descendants.)

The site of Anne's house and the scene of her murder is in what is now Pelham Bay Park, within the limits of New York City, less than a dozen miles from the City Hall. Not far from it, beside the road, is a large glacial boulder, popularly called Split Rock from its division into two parts, probably by the action of frost aided by the growth of a large tree, the stump of which separates the parts. The line of vision of one looking through the split towards Hutchinson River at the foot of the hill will very nearly cross the site of the house. In 1911 a bronze tablet to the memory of Mrs. Hutchinson was placed on Split Rock by the Society of Colonial Dames of the State of New York, who recognized that the resting place of this most noted woman of her time was well worthy of such a memorial. The tablet bears the following inscription:

Birthplace:Alford, Alford Parish, Lincolnshire, England
Death:Died in Pelham Bay, Long Island, New York, USA
Cause of death:Killed by Indians
Occupation:Midwife, Religous Reformer; expelled frm MA in 1637, Banished from Mass Bay Colony 1638, Puritan preacher, came to New England in 1634, midwife / lay physician
Banished From the Massachusetts Bay Colony
In 1638
Because of Her Devotion to Religious Liberty
This Courageous Woman
Sought Freedom From Persecution
In New Netherland
Near This Rock in 1643 She and Her Household
Were Massacred by Indians
This Table is placed here by the
Colonial Dames of the State of New York
Anno Domini MCMXI
Virtutes Majorum Fillae Conservant

April 1996In April, 1996, Anne Hutchinson was honored by the dedication of a plaque which appears in the photo. It was placed at Founders Brook Park on Aquidneck Island (Portsmouth), Rhode Island. The plaque is the work of the Anne Hutchinson Memorial Committee, a g
 Some twentieth century observers credit Anne Hutchinson with being the first American woman to lead the public fight for religious diversity and female quality. In his 1971 biography, Eleanor and Franklin, Joseph P. Lash reported that Eleanor Roosevelt began her list of America's greatest women with Anne Hutchinson. Anne did indeed use her considerable influence as a woman to test the Massachusetts Bay Colony's religious tolerance which, ironically, had been the reason for the settlement.

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