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Richard Taylor, “Tailor” of Plymouth Colony

January 1, 2013 , ,

My 9th great grandfather Richard Taylor, the tailor, of Plymouth Colony was described by an unknown source:

Richard was born in Europe and was three times the age of his wife, Ruth Wheldon. Ruth was ½ blood Wampanoag Indian, born at Yarmouth, daughter of Gaberial Wheldon and his wife Margaret, a full blood Wampanoag Indian. Margaret was the daughter of a Wampanoag Sagamore, a younger brother of Massasoit.

Richard Taylor (1620 – 1673)
is my 9th great grandfather
John TAYLOR (1651 – 1690)
Son of Richard
Abigail Taylor (1663 – 1730)
Daughter of John
Martha Goodwin (1693 – 1769)
Daughter of Abigail
Grace Raiford (1725 – 1778)
Daughter of Martha
Sarah Hirons (1751 – 1817)
Daughter of Grace
John Nimrod Taylor (1770 – 1816)
Son of Sarah
John Samuel Taylor (1798 – 1873)
Son of John Nimrod
William Ellison Taylor (1839 – 1918)
Son of John Samuel
George Harvey Taylor (1884 – 1941)
Son of William Ellison
Ruby Lee Taylor (1922 – 2008)
Daughter of George Harvey
Pamela Morse
I am the daughter of Ruby Lee
Below we see why two Richard Taylors married to two women named Ruth make for a pretty confusing story:

Richard TAYLOR (abt. 1620-1673), “tailor”  Early settler of Yarmouth, Plymouth Colony. Not to be confused with his (possibly slightly younger) contemporary, also of Yarmouth: Richard Taylor (abt 1625-1703), farmer or husbandman of “The Rock”. Both were supposedly married to women by the name of Ruth. Vital statistics
Sex: Male
Born: about 1620 at England
Died: about 13 December 1673 at Yarmouth, Plymouth Colony, age at death unknown.
Interment: Probably at Yarmouth, Plymouth Colony
Richard Taylor’s origins and emigration are unknown. (But see below.)
Several histories and genealogies claim that Richard Taylor, tailor, married Ruth Whelden (abt 1625-1673), daughter of Gabriel Whelden, and that she was the “wife of Richard Taylor”, whose body was found in a boat, drowned, off Duxbury, MA about 3 December 1673. HOWEVER, the inquest records concerning the drowning do not provide her given name at all. They simply identify the body as “the wife of Richard Taylor, sometimes of Yarmouth.” This researcher (Jillaine 16:14, 28 July 2007 (UTC)) believes it’s just as likely that Ruth Whelden was married to Richard Taylor of the “Rock”– and that it is just as likely that the “Ruth, wife of Richard Taylor” who died in 1693 was the daughter of Gabriel Whelden. Older genealogies say that Richard “the Rock” Taylor was likely married to Ruth Burgess, but this has never been proven. So we have no proof of the name of Richard Taylor, tailor’s wife; but we do know that Richard Taylor, the “Rock” did have a wife Ruth who died in 1693.
Ruth Taylor, b. July 29, 1647; buried in 1648.
Ann Taylor, b. Dec. 2, 1648; buried March 29, 1650, aged about 1-1/2 years.
Mary Taylor (1649-??), m. [Abijah Merchant (1651-?)]].
Martha (1650-1728), b. Dec. 18, 1650; m. Joseph Bearse of Barnstable Dec. 3, 1676; d. Jan. 27, 1727-8, aged 77, leaving issue.
John Taylor (1652-1721), m. 15 December 1674 Sarah Matthews, daughter of James Matthews.
Elizabeth Taylor (1655-1721), m. Dec. 20, 1680, Samuel Cobb (1651-?) of Barnstable; d. May 4, 1721, aged 66, leaving issue.
Hannah Taylor (1658-1743), m. as his 2d wife July 19, 1680, Deacon Job Crocker of Barnstable; d. May 14, 1743, in her 85th year, leaving issue.
Ann Taylor (1659-?), m. Josiah Davis, of Barnstable, June 25, 1679, and had issue.
Joseph Taylor (1660-?)
Sarah Taylor (?-1695); d. unmarried July 31, 1695. The inventory of Sarah Taylor of Barnstable was taken Aug. 16, 1695, and amount to £34 19s. Deacon Job Crocker and Samuel Cobb, brothers-in-law, were made administrators Sept. 23, 1695. The estate was, Sept. 13, 1695, ordered equally divided between the brothers and sisters of the deceased, given in the following order, to wit: John Taylor, Joseph Taylor, Mary Marchant, Martha Bearse, Elizbaeth Cobb, Hannah Crocker and Ann Davis. The inventory consisted of wearing apparel, five pounds of worsted yarn, a Bible, cattle, sheep and lambs, cash moneys due from Samuel Cobb and Joseph Bearse, &c.
The biographical information listed below could apply just as easily to Richard Taylor, the “Rock” with the exception of the 1674 will.
Early life and education Edit
There was a Richard Taylor, age 16, on the ship Truelove which departed Gravesend, England on 11 Jun 1635. Other Taylors on that ship were: James Taylor, 28; William Taylor, 17; Ann Taylor, 24.
Military service
1643 (August): He is first mentioned in the Colonial records as among those in Yarmouth between 16 and 60 years of age able to bear arms.
Career Edit
1648 (June 7): was a surveyor of highways for Yarmouth.
1651 (June 6): was sworn as a member of the grandjury.
1656 (May 30): with Edmond Hawes, Richard Taylor was witness to a deed of Samuel Mayo to John Phinney of Barnstable.
1656 (June 3): he was constable of Yarmouth.
1657 (June 3): he was one of the surveyors of highways there. That year he took the oath of fidelity.
Family life
1647 (Oct 28): Gabriel Whelden gave his assent for one Richard Taylor (many believe this one, but without documentation) to marry his daughter, Ruth Whelden.
1655 (May 28; July 27): Richard Taylor, tailor, among others suing widow Margaret Whelden, for a share of the estate left by Gabriel Whelden.
1673 (Dec 3): Richard’s wife, not named, was discovered drowned in a boat off Duxbury. Richard died within a couple of weeks.
Will of Richard Taylor Edit
(Source: James W. Hawes, “Richard Taylor, Tailor, and Some of His Descendants” in ‘Library of Cape Cod History & Genealogy’, No. 48, 1914.) (Transcribed with original spelling maintained.)
The Court (March) 4, 1673-4, made the following order:
“Mr. John Gorum and Mr. John Thacher are joyned with John Taylor ( for the disposing of the estate of Richard Tayler to his children, and for the paying and receiving of debts according to order of Court. Concerning the estate of Richard Tayler, late of Yarmouth, deceased, this Court doth order, first, that the eldest son of the said Tayler shall have his fathers housing, and two thirds of the land, both upland and marsh, and the rest of his portion out of what of the estate Mr. Gorum and Mr. John Thacher shall judge most suitable for him, hee being by order of Court to have a dubble portion. 2condly, it is ordered, that the hay, and what provisions was or is upon the invoice of the estate that is now spent, or shalbe judged convenient for the family to spend betweixt this and the first of the next August, shall not be accounted to the estate, as like-wise what woole and flaxe hath bing spon by the daughters sence theire parents death shalbe accompanted theirs that spon it. The rest of the estate to be devided betweixt the second son and the five daughters, everyone an equall proportion, to bee set out to them as maybe most suitable for them, by the discretion of their eldest brother, and Mr. John Gorum, and Mr. John Thacher. The second son to have the other third of his father’s land, besides his portion equall to his sisters. Lastly, that nothing that hat bin already given or betowed by the said Taylor on any of this children, shall not be considered in the devision, but everyone of to have an equall proportion, after the payment of debts due from the estate.”
His inventory taken Dec. 13, 1673, and submitted to the Court under oath March 6, 1673-4, amounted to L199 4s 11d. The debts of the estate were L18 1s. 2d. Included in the inventory were 12 acres of upland, nine of meadow and three of marsh, which together with houses and some grain sown amounted to L60. The children named are John, Joseph, Martha and Mary. The inventory shows that he possessed a considerable many cattle, shep and hogs, one horse, corn, wheat, flax, provisions, 21 yards of cloth, lumber and household articles. There were due to him 38.5 barrels of tar, and John Blake of Boston owed him money. Some things had been given to the children in his life time.

Richard Taylor, Tailor and Some of His Descendants, by James W. Hawes; C.W. Swift, publisher, Yarmouthport, Mass.: 1914.
Barnstable Probate Records
Plymouth Colony Records, Volume 5; pp. 122-123
Plymouth Colony Wills
NEHGS Register, Volume 3, 1849, p. 189 citing CR, Volume II, p. 18
NEHGS Register, Volume 4, 1850, p. 258.
NEHGS Register, volume 14, 1860, p. 354
The history of Cape Cod : annals of thirteen towns of Barnstable County, p. 182; p. 193.
History of Barnstable County, Massachusetts, edited by Simeon L. Deyo. 1890. New York: H. W. Blake & Co.; CHAPTER XVII, pages 453-506. Town of Yarmouth, by Hon. Charles F. Swift.
James Savage, Vol. IV, p. 263
Torrey, Clarence Alman, New England Marriages, Genealogical Publishing Co., 1985; p. 730
Court Files of Middlesex County, Mass., 1649-1675 (through NEHGS web site)
Middlesex Court Files Folio 11; HLS #409 and 411.
History of Yarmouth, 1884, p. 88

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