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Governor Thomas MAYHEW

Male 1593 - 1682  (~ 88 years)

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  • Name Thomas MAYHEW 
    Prefix Governor 
    Born Apr 1593  Tisbury, Wiltshire, England Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Gender Male 
    Died 28 Mar 1682  Edgartown, Dukes, Massachusetts, USA Find all individuals with events at this location 
    • Governor of Martha’s Vineyard 1644-5.

      “Thomas Mayhew, bapt. 1 April 1593 in Tisbury, as "Thomas, son of Mathew Maho" (3). Some information on Thomas is provided by (1), citing a variety of sources ((3), (5), (6), (7), and (8)). His father died when he was about 21 and he apparently became a merchant apprentice of Richard Macey (or Masey) of Southampton before emigrating in 1631. It is also stated that he came to Medford, MA in 1635; he seems to have lived at both Watertown and Medford. He was a prominent member of the Ancient and Honorable Artillery Co.

      He was first married (in England) to Abigail Parkus (or Parkhurst) in about 1619. His second marriage in about 1634 (presumably in MA?) was to Jane Gallyon, b. 1612, died after 1666. "The name Gallyon (Gallion) was very uncommon in England and may be Scotch. Jane married first to Thomas Payne, probably a London merchant, who predeceased her. She is said to have returned to England to fight a court case for a large sum of money for her children by him" (3). One of her children by this first marriage to Payne would later marry the son of Thomas by his first marriage. Thomas had one son by his first marriage and four daughters by his second marriage (see next section).

      Then a settler at Watertown, MA (near Boston), Thomas must have been by then a very successful merhant as he purchased in October 1641, from Lord Stirling and Sir Ferdinando Gorges, the islands of Martha's Vineyard, Nantucket, and the Elizabeteth Islands. Thomas would have been about 48 at that time. The now Governor Mayhew sent his son Thomas that same year to settle with a few families and to be a missionary to the Indians.The following year in 1642, the Governor himself came to the island with other settlers and new supplies. Among the ten or so families that were there in 1650, we find the name Folger (a link with my Mayflower line?).

      After his son's untimely loss at sea at age 37, the Governor, succeeded him as missionary pastor and "preached to them one day every week as long as he lived. Sparing no pains or fatigue, sometimes walking twenty miles through the woods to Gay Head, to carry on the noble work commenced by his son" (9). Thomas was settled at Edgartown on Martha's Vineyard by 1658-81 (or permanently alone from 1674?). There is a deed in the Edgartown records (9) wherein the Governor attests: "I do sell the island of Nantucket for thitty pounds Stirling and two beaver hats, one for my wife, and one for myself".

      He lived to be about 90, dying 25 March 1681 at Edgartown, MA. His wife was living 15 May 1666 but predeceased her husband.”

      “THOMAS MAYHEW (Matthew4), bapt. 1 Apr. 1593 at Tisbury, Eng., is the Governor, first of the name in this country, whose personal history has been sufficiently detailed in the two preceding volumes. The name of his first wife is not known nor haas any clue to the date and place of the marriage been found. Neither is it known when or where she died. [Iris Gardner writes, "1st wife of Thomas Paine Mayhew was Martha Parkhurst b. 1595, d. 1635. Their son waas Thomas Mayhew Jr., who married Jane Gallion."] He m. (2) Mrs. JANE (Gallion?)* PAINE, wid. of Mr. Thomas Paine, a London merchant, abt. 1634 (Vol. II, p. 90, Annals of E.). [*The name Gallion, if it be correctly given, is very rare in Englandd. Galland is found in Green's Norton where the Paines owned property, and Gallyon in Ramsey, Huntingdonshire.] She was living 15 May 1666, but died before her husband. In London the compiler found references to a Gallion family, to which she may have belonged, and he has many other English notes relative to the Mayhews which he hopes to follow up in the future.

      Some interesting additional facts have also been discovered by the compiler respecting the early life of Gov. Mayhew. It will be recalled (Vol. I, p. 114) that a contemporary writer states that the Governor was "a merchant bred in England, as I take it, at Southampton."

      During a recent visit of the compiler to England confirmation of this was obtained which shows that this statement is correct. The following is verbatim copy of a record in the "Book of Free Commoners" belonging to the corporation of Southampton:

      "Nono die ffebr' 1620 (i.e. 1621) Thomas Mayhew late servant and apprntiee unto Richard Masey of the Towne and countie of Southampton mrcer havinge well and truely served his spprntiship with his said mr whoe beinge prsent testified to the samme And he the said Thomas Mayhewe (desieringe to be admitted a free commoner of the said Towne to use his trade of a mrcer in this said Towne and his said mr likewise desieringe the same) was therefore this prsent daie admitted and sworren a free commoner accordingly."

      An interesting and important statement is therein found which recalls the statement of Thomas Macey of Nantucket (who is said to have emigrated from Chilmark, co. Wilts), that Governor Thomas Mayhew was his "honored cousin" (N. Y. Col. Mss., Vol. 25) and here is found documentary evidence that Thomas Mayhew was an apprentice of Richard Macey, a Southampton merchant. Richard Macey, his master, was a native of Chilmark and in his will of 20 Nov. 1633 he provided for his burial in that parish (Arch. Sarum X. 30). Undoubtededly further search would reveal the exact relationship of this Richard to Thomas Macey, the emigrant, and thus show the kinship between the families of Mayhew and Macey.

      Governor Mayhew had the following named children:

      By First Wife:

      20. THOMAS, b. (1620­1).

      By Second Wife:

      21. HANNAH, b.15 June 1635; m. (1) THOMAS DAGGETT (3); (2) SAMUEL SMITH.
      22. BETHIAH, b.6 Dec. 1636; m. (l) THOMAS HARLOCK; (2) RICHARD WAY 1675. [Iris Gardner writes, "Mary E. Way did a study of the Way Family of Nantucket, and wrote a book as well, titled The Way Family. My connection is with Bethiah Mayhew, who married Richard Way. She was the daughter of Thomas Paine Mayhew and Jane Gallion. Simon Mayhew was my 13th Great Grandfather.]
      23. MARY, b.14 Jan. 1639­40; Prob. d.y.
      24. MARTHA, b. (1642); m. THOMAS TUPPER 27 Dec. 1661. [*From this marriage was descendant the late Sir Charles Tupper, prime minister of Canada.]”

      From NEGHS Great Migration:
      ORIGIN: Tisbury, Wiltshire
      MIGRATION: 1632
      FIRST RESIDENCE: Medford
      REMOVES: Watertown by 1634, Martha's Vineyard by 1647
      OCCUPATION: Steward. Magistrate.
      CHURCH MEMBERSHIP: Admission to Watertown church prior to 14 May 1634 implied by freemanship.
      FREEMAN: 14 May 1634 (as "Mr. Tho[mas] Mahewe")
      EDUCATION: His letters to the Winthrops were direct and full of practical business matters OFFICES: Watertown selectman, 10 October 1636, 30 December 1637, 10 December 1638, 6 December 1639, 29 December 1640, 21 November 1642. Assessor, 20 December 1642. Arbiter, 30 June 1648. Appraiser of land, 10 September 1643. (Further details of his life and offices, which are, as Banks said, "interwoven with the political and social conditions of the Island," may be found in Martha's Vineyard Hist.)
      ESTATE: Granted Great Dividend of eighty acres at Watertown, 25 July 1636. Granted Beaverbrook Plowlands of thirty acres, 28 February 1636/7. Granted Remote Meadows of thirty acres, 26 June 1637.
      In the Watertown Inventory of Grants "Thomas Maihue" held five parcels: "ten acres of upland ... with a pond in it"; thirty acres of plowland in the Further Plain; eighty acres of upland being a Great Dividend; thirty acres in the Remote Meadows; and thirty-one acres and a half beyond the Further Plain. In the Composite Inventory "Thomas Maihew" held six parcels, being the five in the Inventory of Grants, to which is added "a farm of two hundred and fifty acres".
      On 8 May 1653 in the first division of common land at Edgartown, Mr. Mayhew received lot number 14. Following this, he received his proportion in all subsequent divisions. In his will, dated 16 June 1681 and proved 28 March 1682, "Thomas Mayhew of Edgartown upon the Vineyard in this ninetieth year of my age" divided his extensive lands on Martha's Vineyard and elsewhere among "Matthew Mayhew, my grandson" (with conditional provisions for "Thomas and John Mayhew, Jerusha and Jedidah"), "my daughter Hannah" and "her sons Samuel, John and Joshua Daggett," "my daughter Martha," "Thomas and John Harlock, and their sister at Boston," naming also to "my son Daggett" and "my son Tupper".
      BIRTH: Baptized 1 April 1593 at Tisbury, Wiltshire, son of Matthew and Alice (Barter) Mayhew.
      DEATH: Martha's Vineyard 25 March 1682.
      MARRIAGE: (1) By about 1620 _____ _____; she died before 1635. (2) Jane (Gallion) Paine, widow of Thomas Paine, London merchant. She died after 1666 but before her husband.
      With first wife
      i THOMAS, b. say 1620; m. by about 1648 Jane _____ .

      With second wife
      ii HANNAH, b. 15 June 1635; m. by about 1652 Thomas Doggett, son of JOHN DOGGETT.
      iii BETHIAH, b. 6 December 1636; m. (1) by 1658 Thomas Harlock; m. (2) by 1677 as his second wife Richard Way (child b. Boston 13 July 1677); she d. by 1678
      iv MARY, b. 14 January 1639[/40]; no further record (unless she is the same as Martha below).
      v MARTHA, b. say 1641; m. Sandwich 27 December 1661 Thomas Tupper
      ASSOCIATIONS: Thomas Macey of Nantucket called Thomas Mayhew his "honored cousin". A Thomas Mayhew of Southampton was apprenticed to Richard Masey, merchant, and was admitted a free commoner of that town on 9 February 1620[/1]
      COMMENTS: The first documented appearance of Thomas Mayhew in New England was on 7 November 1632, under the disguise of "Mr. Mavericke Junior" On that date, he, Mr. Alcocke and Mr. Turner were commissioned by the General Court to settle a boundaary dispute between Cambridge and Charlestown. When they completed their duties, they reported back to the Court, and their report was recorded in two separate places in the records, in slightly different form. The first time it is entered on its own leaf, and out of chronological sequence; on this occasion the signatures of the members of the committee are appended: "Tho: Mayhewe, Nath: Turner, George Alcocke." The second version is shorter, but in the right place chronologically. Redating the earlier version of this document removes the presumed evidence for Mayhew's arrival in 1631, the date stated by both Savage and Pope.
      The likelihood that Thomas Mayhew came to New England in 1632 raises an interesting possibility, based on an Admiralty suit of that year. In the case of Mason v. Gibbs, two sailors testified that the Lyon's Whelp sailed from England in January 11631/2 and arrived at the Isles of Shoals in May 1632, and carried as its only passengers "a man and his wife, their two daughters and their man," and one of the sailors added that this nameless family "were embarked for New England on behalf of Matthew Craddock". Thomas Mayhew is known to have come to New England as Matthew Craddock's steward.
      About 1640 Mr. Valentine Hill of Boston, merchant, and Mr. Thomas Mayhew of Watertown, gentleman, agreed to an arbitration of their troubles. On 10 March 1649[/50] Mr. Bruen informed his friend Mr. John Birke that Mr. Thomas Mayhew was in his debt for twenty thousand of pipe staves.
      In 1901 Charles Edward Banks published the English ancestry of Gov. Thomas Mayhew.
      Lechford records several documents in which Thomas Mayhew and his wife Jane Mayhew, formerly the wife of Thomas Paine of London, act as guardians for Thomas Paine, Jane's son with her first husband. Savage introduced confusion by stating that the widow Paine bore the Christian name "Grace" rather than Jane. It may be this confusion that led him to state that the wife of the younger Thomas Mayhew was Jane Paine, allegedly daughter of this non-existent Grace, and therefore his stepsister.
      Edward Everett Hale Jr., Lechford's editor, showed that Grace did not exist and also that, based on the documents in Lechford, there is no evidence that the younger Thomas married a stepsister named Jane Paine.”«s35», «s43» [1, 2]
    Person ID I7754  Lowell&Block
    Last Modified 29 Apr 2020 

    Father Matthew MAYHEW,   b. 1550, Tisbury, Wiltshire, England Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 24 Jun 1614, Tisbury, Wiltshire, England Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 64 years) 
    Mother Alice BARTER,   b. 2 Oct 1540, Wiltshire Co., England Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. Bef 1614  (Age < 73 years) 
    Married 2 Oct 1587 
    Family ID F2755  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family 1 Abigail PARKUS 
    Married Abt 1619 
     1. Thomas MAYHEW,   b. 1620, England Find all individuals with events at this location
    Last Modified 29 Apr 2020 
    Family ID F3047  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family 2 Jane GALLYON,   b. 1612,   d. Aft 1666  (Age > 55 years) 
    Married Abt 1634  Medford, Middlesex, Massachusetts, USA Find all individuals with events at this location 
    +1. Hannah MAYHEW,   b. 15 Jun 1635, Medford, Middlesex, Massachusetts, USA Find all individuals with events at this location
    +2. Bethia MAYHEW,   b. 6 Dec 1636, Medford, Middlesex, Massachusetts, USA Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 1678  (Age 41 years)
     3. Martha MAYHEW,   b. 1638, Watertown, Middlesex, Massachusetts, USA Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 15 Nov 1717, Sandwich, Barnstable, Massachusetts, USA Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 79 years)
     4. Mary MAYHEW,   b. 14 Jan 1639, Medford, Middlesex, Massachusetts, USA Find all individuals with events at this location
    Last Modified 29 Apr 2020 
    Family ID F2751  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

  • Event Map
    Link to Google MapsBorn - Apr 1593 - Tisbury, Wiltshire, England Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsMarried - Abt 1634 - Medford, Middlesex, Massachusetts, USA Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsDied - 28 Mar 1682 - Edgartown, Dukes, Massachusetts, USA Link to Google Earth
     = Link to Google Earth 

  • Sources 
    1. [S35] The History of Martha’s Vineyard, Dukes County, Massachusetts., Banks, Charles., (Martha’s Vineyard Historical Society, 1911. 3 v.).

    2. [S43] “Mayhew Family of Massachusetts.”, Graham, Doughlas J.