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Caleb Carr, Governor of Rhode Island Colony

January 30, 2013 , ,

Caleb Carr at Rest

Caleb Carr at Rest

I must amend this post because I made an error in my tree.  After I had the good luck to visit Caleb, I learned that I had the wrong Sweet in the 1600s.  I have corrected the error, but will am leaving this here for his fans.  He is not my 9th great grandfather, but is my relative.

Gov. Caleb Carr , born in London, Eng., Dec. 9, 1616, came to America with his brother Robert, on the ship Elizabeth Ann, which sailed from London May 9, 1635. He settled in Newport, R.I., with his brother Robert about 1640. He held many offices of public trust and honor during his lifetime, and accumlated considerable property. He was general treasurer from May 21, 1661 to May 22, 1662. In 1687-8, he was justice of the General Quarterly Session and Inferior Court of Common Pleas. He was governor of the colony in 1695, which last office he held till his death, which occured on the 17th day of December, of the same year. He was drowned. In religious belief he was a Friend or Quaker.

He had seven children by his first wife Mercy, (probably Mercy Vaughan) who died Sept. 21, 1675, and was buried in the family burying ground. The inscription on her gravestone reads as follows: “Here lieth interred ye body of Mercy Carr, first wife of Caleb Carr, who departed this life ye 21st day of September, in ye 45th year of her age, and in the year of our Lord, 1675.” His second wife was Sarah Clarke, (Widow Pinner) daughter of Jeremiah Clarke, and sister of Gov. Walter Clarke, and by whom he had  four children. She was born in 1651 and died in 1706.

He died Dec.17, 1695, and was buried in the family burying ground on Mill street, beside his first wife. The inscription on his tombstone reads: “Here lieth interred the body of Caleb Carr, governor of this colony, who departed this life ye 17th day of December, 1695, in ye 73rd (79) year of his age.”

Caleb Carr (1623 – 1695)
is my 9th great grandfather
Sarah Carr (1682 – 1765)
Daughter of Caleb
John Hammett (1705 – 1752)
Son of Sarah
MARGARET HAMMETT (1721 – 1753)
Daughter of John
Benjamin Sweet (1722 – 1789)
Paul Sweet (1762 – 1836)
Son of Benjamin
Valentine Sweet (1791 – 1858)
Son of Paul
Sarah LaVina Sweet (1840 – 1923)
Daughter of Valentine
Jason A Morse (1862 – 1932)
Son of Sarah LaVina
Ernest Abner Morse (1890 – 1965)
Son of Jason A
Richard Arden Morse (1920 – 2004)
Son of Ernest Abner
Pamela Morse
I am the daughter of Richard Arden

On May 9, 1635 the ship Elizabeth and Ann slipped her moorings and put out from London, England under the command of Roger Cooper, Master. Her destination was New England. On board were on hundred and two passengers bearing permission to emmigrate to the new world that lay on the western shore of their ocean.

Among these passengers two should command our attention. These are listed in the old records as Robert and Caleb Carr. The notation of “Taylor” is appended to the name of Robert designating his trade. A later writer, Dr. Turner of Newport, refers to them as from Scotland. As yet we do not know exactly from whence they came.

Sometime in the following June (early midsummer, one account says) the ship arrived in Boston harbor and our ancestors were in America.

For the next two years we have to guess as to the residence of the two passengers on the Elizabeth and Ann. For the remainder of their lives Robert and Caleb Carr were close associates of William Coddington who came from Boston, Lincolnshire, England as of of the original members of the Mass. Bay Company in 1629 and was a leading merchant in Boston, Mass. during this period. Robert and Caleb landed at Boston and two years later left Boston. Adding all these facts together are w not permitted to assume that our ancestors were for these first two years of the living on this side the Atlantic in the rapidly growing town of Boston.

Early in 1637 a group of Boston people led by William Coddington left Boston because of religious differences. They went to Providence and conferred with Roger Williams as to settling in those parts. With the active aid of Mr. Williams the group purchased from the Indians the large town of Quidnick and immediately proceeded to the business of founding the town of Pocassit (later called Portsmouth). It is thought that the Carrs left Boston with this group. Certainly they were early at the Pocassit settlement for on Feb. 21, 1638 Robert Carr was listed as an inhabitant. It is my thought that Caleb who was still but a child of fourteen accompanied Robert.

Many seem to have come to the new settlement at Pocassit that summer of 1638 and the following winter for in the spring of the next year William Coddington and a small group of the leading men removed to the south end of the island to lay out a new settlement leaving at Pocassit a goodly company to carry on.

Again the Carrs followed William Coddington and like him remained at the new settlement the rest of their days. the name which they gave this new home was remained unchanged all these years. It is still Newport.

Lying in the mouth of Narragansett Bay off shore from Newport is the sizable island of Conanicut (known now as Jamestown). In contrast with the forested shores of Aquidnick, Conanicut had some cleared land where the Indians had for generations summered and grown their corn and vegetables. This area of hay, pasturage and vegetable land appealed to the forest bound inhabitants of Newport. Thus in 1659 we find William Coddington, Benedict Arnold, William Brenton, Caleb Carr and Richard Smith leading a company of Newport citizens in arranging the transfer of Conanicut and the small adjoining islands of Gould and Dutch to themselves. Chief Quisaquam made the transfer on the part of the Indians.

Both Robert and Caleb were among the ninety-eight original purchasers of the island. It is thought that neither of the brothers resided on the island. This move was left to their children.

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Amazing that they were one of the original purchasers of the island! I love finding out bits of historical trivia like that:-)


Jess @UsedYorkCity

January 31, 2013

Enjoy reading of family history, my Carr line is from Edward Carr son of Gov Caleb Carr



September 22, 2015

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