Early Walton Migrations in New England

By the early 1700s most of the children of Rev. William  Walton were gone from Marblehead.  The girls had married, had their own families and were dead.  John was unaccounted for, but apparently not anywhere close to Marblehead if he was even alive.  Neither Nathaniel (who was still alive) nor Josiah (who died at sea from a lightening strike) probably ever married and had no offspring.  Samuel (my 7th great grandfather) lived in Marblehead until the late 1690s when he sold his land and moved to Reading, Massachusetts in Middlesex County where several of his children had moved. It seems evident that the descendants of  Reverend William Walton came only from his daughter Elizabeth (who married Lot Conant) and his son Samuel. It may be that his daughter Mary had children with her husband Robert Barrett but I have no evidence of that. Samuel and Sara had seven children; four girls and three boys. Why his children moved away from Marblehead is not clear and at least some of the girls may have remained under their married names.  So far I have not been able to find out that information and it awaits further research. 

Samuel’s and Sara’s son John did move to Reading and seems to have stayed there the rest of his  life – born in 1685 in Marblehead and died in 1774 in Reading.  His children were all born in Reading.  Another son, Samuel (my 6th great grandfather), married Hannah Leach and lived in Reading at least until 1719/1720 when their son Jonathan was born.  At some time after that they moved to Hampton Falls, New Hampshire and Samuel died there in 1753. Samuel and Hannah had seven children; three girls and four boys. Their son Samuel (my 5th great grandfather) was born in Reading in 1705,  married Rebecca Davis in 1729 in Reading and died in Amherst, New Hampshire in 1749/1750.   Apparently for a time Samuel and Rebecca lived in Lynn, Massachusetts since their first three sons were born there.  By 1736 they were in New Hampshire where their remaining six sons were born. I have no recorded information on the place of death for three of the sons (Samuel, Benjamin and Simeon), One son, Reuben, moved further east in New Hampshire and died in Stoddard, NH in 1820. The remaining five sons all moved to and died in various places in Maine.

Here are most of the towns (yellow stick pins) in Massachusetts and New Hampshire that the Walton descendants lived in until bout 1750.

Massachusetts Places

Now for a little history lesson – I know I really needed it to help keep things straight.  In 1775 the original 13 Colonies were Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina, Virginia, Maryland, Delaware, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York, Connecticut, Rhode Island, Massachusetts and New Hampshire (which had been governed by Massachusetts for a long period of time before 1740).  Maine did not exist at that time but was considered part of Massachusetts. Since the founding of the Plymouth and Massachusetts Bay colonies, the area presently known as Maine was a province primarily controlled by Massachusetts.  Before and after the Revolutionary War, Maine passed into and back out of “self rule” multiple times and finally in 1820 was admitted as a full fledged state. This uncertainty in government control not only makes tracing ancestors difficult but it makes it hard to accurately describe locations.  Consequently, I have chosen to use the names of towns and counties as presently known instead of trying to be historically accurate in assigning governmental control.


About larrytom2

Older guy interested in genealogy and family issues.
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