Search billions of records on Ancestry.com
   

 

Page 1

THE POLLARD FAMILY

The families of Pollard in America are descended from at least two New England stocks.  Savage(*) mentions three early settlers of this name, one of whom, George Pollard of Salem (whose Will was proved 31 Jan. 1646), probably left no descendants.

  WILLIAM POLLARD of Boston have a large family among whom were the following sons: -- 1.  John, 1644, who had William, 1671, John, 1673, and Samuel, 1680; 2.  Samuel, 1646;  3.  William, 1653, who had William, 1690; 4. Joseph, 1657; 5. Benjamin, 1663; 6. Jonathan, 1666, who had Benjamin, 1696; and 7. and David, 1668.  Ann(???), wife of this William Pollard was the girl who was in the first boat that crossed Charles River in 1630 to what is now Boston, and was the first to jump ashore.  Her portrait painted in 1721 at the age of 100 is preserved in the collection of the Massachusetts Historical Society, and a print of it appeared in Harper's Weekly some years ago.  We have not attempted to trace the later history of this branch of the family, which, so far as record show, is not related to our own. 

The second New England family of Pollard is that descended from THOMAS POLLARD who settled in Billerica in 1692.  Of this family, Savage,(+) after naming of the children, remarks: "We must in vain regret that dates are not given."  Later investigations by Hazen ?? and others have brought to light the records of the early generations, from which we have been able to trace the relation of our own branch of the family which migrated from New England early in the present century.  From the place of settlement and so adjourn of the early Family we may speak of this branch of the family as

THE BILLERICA'S POLLARDS

The early members of this family, so far as we can learn, belonged to the honest yeomanry of New England.  Industrious, intelligent and patriotic, they formed a part of that strong middle-class from which has originated much of the brain and brawn that has affected the later development of the country.  From early times the family has manifested a military spirit.  Thomas Pollard, the first of the name in America, was in the Indian wars early in the eighteenth century; numerous descendants were in the French and Indian War and the Revolution, and the first man to fall at Bunker Hill was a member of the Pollard Family.  Nor was the ancient spirit lacking when the Rebellion of 1861 broke out.  Among the members of the gallant Seventh Regiment that left New York to follow the Sixth Massachusetts to the front, there was one who bore the name of Pollard, and eight in whose veins the blood of Jonathan Pollard flowed, served in the rank-and-file of the army of the Republic that saved the nation from disunion.

A desire to place the record of one branch of the family in permanent form has resulted in the present publication.  It has been gathered during minutes of recreation taken from a busy life, and has proved a labor of love.  It is hoped that the descendants who are still living will derive as much pleasure and feel as much pride in reading the records of their ancestry as the compiler has experienced in searching them out from the musty archives.

 

Page 2

Ancestry of Jonathan Pollard 

of

 New Braintree, Massachusetts

 

    William Pollard 1 of Coventry, Warwickshire England is the earliest ancestor to whom we can trace our line to America . So far as we know he lived and died at that place during the latter part of the seventeenth century. A search of parish records in Coventry will probably yield some facts concerning him. It is known that he married Mary Farmer, daughter of John Farmer and Isabella his wife ( * Isabella of Ansley in the same county) . Nothing is known of his family except the following son.

   Thomas Pollard2 (William1), was the first of this Iine that lived in America. He removed to Billerica (+) in the province of Massachusetts Bay about 1692 "and purchased the place and 'right', which had been William Hale's, near the fordway, and received in 1709 a grant of thirty acres between the road and the fordway and the read which turns east from it.  In November of that year he married Sarah. , daughter of Edward Farmer ?? who was a brother of Mary Farmer mentioned above. Thomas Pollard and his wife were, therefore, own cousins, their children born at Billerica are as follows.

i  MARY, b 20 Aug 1693; m Joshua Wyman.

ii  Edward, b, 4 Nor 1694, m. 21 Oct 1725 Judith Hazeltine by    whom he had five Children; Resided at Billerica.

iii.  BARBARA, b, 6 Dec.1695, m 13 Feb. 1733-4 Joseph Pierce  of Chelmsford.

iv,   THOMAS, b 16 Feb. 1696-7, settled in Dunstable and was in military service in 1722 and during the French and Indian War.

v    WILLIAM, b 3 Aug. 1698 Nothing further is known of him except his signature at he settlement of his fathers estate 1724

vi JOHN, b, 1 Sept 16W (See page 3)

vii  SARAH. b 16 Feb 1700-1 ~ died 3 March following

Viii JOSEPH, b 3 May 1702, m. Abigail Hill and lived in Nottingham, NH, Westford MASS. and finally New Ipswich, NH.. where he died in 1780

ix      OLI VER, bx 23 July 1703, m. 17 Feb 1735-6 Hannah Hill and lived in Bedford

x       SARAH, b 21 Dec. 1705, m. Richard Hall

xi     NATHANIEL, b I8 Oct, 1706, m. Mary (???)  and lived in Billerica

xii  JAMES, b. 5 Oct. 1708; m. Abigail Chamberlain of Chelmsford and lived  in Westford,Mass

xiii  WALTER, b 28 Dec 1709, m. 9 Sept 1735 Dorothy Danforth

xiv  ELIZABETH, b 5 Mar 1712-13,

(*) John Farmer, the early genealogist of New England, makes this note on his ancestors and ours Mrs. Isabell Wizwall was wife of John Farmer of Ansley in the county of Warwickshire and came to this country with some of her children after his death, which occurred prior to 1669. It appears from original papers that she was sister to Rev. Thomas Muston of Wykin and afterwards of Brinklow England. She married Mr. Thomas Wiswall whence she acquired the name. She died at Billierica, Mass, 21 March 1686.

Page 3 

(+) Billerica is a small town located about 20 miles northwest of Boston .It was originally a part of Cambridge from which it was set off as a distinct town in 1655.

?? Edward Farmer came to Billerica probably in 1671.His house lot was on the east side of Long street and remained in possession of the family until recent date: the house was a garrison. Mr. Farmer died May 27, 1727, about 87 years of age. His wife Mary (???) died March 26, 1719, age 77.

Edward his only son, (1733-1814) was a solider in the revolution. Of his four grandsons bearing his name, Edward and Jeremiah lived in Vermont, and Jonathan and William lived in Billerica. A grandson of Jonathan, Rev. George Adams Pollard (Bowdoin 1851) was a missionary A.B.C.P.M. in Asiatic Turkey 1856-1857and now lives in Grand Rapids Mich.

(Transcribers note: with the absence of a publishing date this last line seems to place the publishing of this book to between 1858-1900?)

He had two sons, Joseph and Soiomon (Solomon?). From the former who was a Revolutionary soldier, has descended Hon. James A. Pollard of Windsor Vermont, for many years superintendent of the Vermont state prison.

The will of Oliver Pollard proved 1831 is recorded in the Middlesex probate.

His family consisted of three sons and four daughters. His son Benjamin was one of the minutemen at Lexington and later served at Saratoga and Bennington.

Page 4

xv. BENJAMIN, b. 18 Oct. 1715, "Ye tenth son" as the records say. Nothing further is known of him except that he was probably the Benjamin Pollard who served at Crown Point 1758-9.

Thomas Pollard served in the Indian wars (1706): two and possibly three of his sons and four grandsons were in the service during the wars with the French and Indians; and four grandsons and at least four great grandsons were in the Revolutionary war. Thomas Pollard died intestate (*) 4 April 1724. A little more than a year later his wife Sarah died (3 May 1725).

John Pollard 3 (Thomas,2 William I), was born at Billerica, Mass., I Sept. 1699, He was married three times as follows:--(I) 27 Sept. 1728 to Mary, daughter of Isaac and Mary (Meriam) Steams(+) who bore him six children and died 18 Aug. 1738; (2) 14 Sept. 1741 to Alice, widow of Isaac Steams 2nd who bore him three children and died 4 Nov. 1756; (3) 26 Mar. 1762 to Susanna Baldwin who survived him. From a statement made in the settlement of his father's property we conclude that he was a cooper by trade as was his elder brother Edward. At the "rating" of the Billerica meeting house in 1736 he was located "third seate below" or next to the gentlemen. His tax for minister's rate was 10s. 3d. on the list for 1733 and 9s. 4d. 1 far. for 1755 which was considerably higher than those of his brothers Edward, Nathaniel and Walter. His children were as follows:-

i ,JOHN, b. 24 June 1729, (See page 5).

ii. JONATHAN, b. 13 May 173 1; m. 30 Mar. 1758 Olive White by whom he had nine children all but two of whom died in early childhood. He was a soldier in the French and Indian wars. The settlement of his estate in 1806 (Middlesex Probate Records No. 12,596) closes the record of the male line of this family.

iii SOLOMON, b. 15 Oct. 1732; m. 11 Dec. 1755 Hannah Danforth, by whom he had seven children, among them Isaac and Francis who had families in Billerica. He was in the French and Indian war, served at Bunker Hill and was in the service as late as 1779, he was latterly referred to as "Captain." His estate was settled in 1803,

iv MARY, b. 1 Apr. 1734, d. 25 May 1736.

v.ASA, b. 15 Nov. 1735. Served as a soldier at Crown Point 1755-6 and in the Lake Champlain campaign of 1758-9, was the first man killed at the battle of Bunker Hill, 17 June 1775.

(*)The settlement of his property devolved upon his oldest son Edward. Among the interesting papers connected with the settlement and preserved in the Middlesex Probate Records (No. 12,600) are inventories of the estate, selections of guardians for the minor children, and a receipt signed by the Widow, and the children Edward, Barbary [sic] William, John, Josep, [sic] and Oliver, and by representatives of the remaining children. Among the items i n the I list of expenses are "Funeral charges for father 23-qe 5s. 9d." "Funeral charges for mother 15qe 15s~ 4d. 6 far,"

Page 5 

(+)Isaac Steams of Billerica was a grandson of Isaac Steams of Neyland, Suffolk, England, who came to America 1630 and settled in Watertown, Mass. Mary Merriam was the granddaughter of Joseph Merriam who came to this country from Hadlow, County Kent, England. Her father's tombstone is the oldest in the Concord churchyard. Her maternal grandfather was Dea. Gregory Stone who came to America 1635 and was one of the early settlers of Cambridge, Mass., and one of the Deacons of the first church in that place, of which the Rev. Thomas Shepard was pastor.

 

?? In early New England the distinctions of rank were clearly defined and sedulously maintained.Two classes existed in every town and in the mention of a man the records clearly state in each case whether he was "gentleman" or simply "yeoman." The former were further distinguished by "Mr." which appears in public, private and monumental records. The latter were addressed as "Goodman." This early distinction was maintained as late as 1793 as seen in the document that appears on p. 5. The church goers were frequently seated in church according to secular rank.

 

*In a letter describing the events of the bat le Col. Wm. Prescott says of his death: "He was so near me that my clothes were besmeared with his blood and brains which I wiped off in some degree with a handful of fresh earth. The sight was so shocking to many of the men that they left their posts and ran to view him. I then ordered him to be buried instantly. A subaltern officer expressed surprise that I should allow him to be buried without having prayers said. I replied, 'This is the first man that has been killed, and the only one that will be burled to-day. God only knows who or how many of us will fall before it is over."'