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  • Pilgrim Village Families Sketch: John Bursley

    Robert Charles Anderson

    Birth: John Bursley was born in England about 1600.

    Death: He died in Barnstable before August 21, 1660, the date of his inventory.

    Ship: Unknown, 1623

    Life in England: Nothing is known of his life in England.

    Life in New England: John Bursley was one of the men sent by Robert Gorges to settle Wessagusset, which became Weymouth. He became a freeman of Weymouth on May 18, 1631. He served as a deputy for the Massachusetts Bay General Court in 1636 and on various committees. He removed to Barnstable in 1639 and served as a constable there in 1645.

    Family:  He married Joanna Hull in Sandwich about November 28, 1639, and had seven children.After his death, she married (2) Dolar Davis as his second wife. She was still alive in July 4, 1673, when she testified to the accuracy of Dolar Davis’s inventory.

    Children of John and Joanna Bursley:

    • A child “died suddenly in the night and buried” at Barnstable on January 25, 1640/1.
    • Mary was baptized in Barnstable on July 29, 1643. She married John Crocker on April 25, 1663, as his second wife and had ten children.
    • John was baptized in Barnstable on September 22, 1644, and buried five days later.
    • Joanna was baptized in Barnstable on March 1, 1645/6. She married Shubael Dimmock in April 1653 [sic, probably 1663] and had eight children.
    • Elizabeth was baptized in Barnstable on March 29, 1649. She married Nathaniel Goodspeed in Barnstable in November 1666 and had one daughter. She married (2) Increase Clap on October 1675 and had four children.
    • John was baptized in Barnstable on April 11, 1652. He married Elizabeth Howland in December 1673 in Barnstable and had ten children. She died after January 30, 1695. He died in Barnstable on August 5, 1726.
    • Temperance was born about 1657. She married Joseph Crocker in December 1677 and had seven children.
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