Tuesday, December 2, 2008

The Covenant of Dedham, MA 1636

A covenant has a biblical meaning it is different than a contract. This Covenant was first signed 15 Aug 1636. 125 men signed over a period of years. I have found 4 signers who were our direct grandfathers.


Dedham, Massachusetts (Settled 1635; incorporated 1636)

  1. We whose names are hereunto subscribed, doe, in the feare and reverence of out Almightie God, mutually; and severally pmise amongst ourselves and each other to pffesse and practice one trueth according to that most pfect rule, the foundation whereof is everlasting Love;
  2. That we shall by all meanes Laboure to keepe of from us all such as ar contrayre minded and receave onely such unto us as be such as may be pbably of one harte with us that we either knowe or may well and truly be informed to walke in a peaceable conversation with all meekeness of spirit for the edification of each other in the knowledge and faith of the Lord Jesus; and the mutual encouragement unto all Temporall comforts in all things; seeking the good of each other out of all which may be derived true Peace.
  3. That if at any time difference shall arise betwene pties of out said Towne; that then such ptie and pties shall prsently Referre all such difference unto someone 2 or 3 others of our said societie, to be accorded and determined without any further delaye if it possibly may bee;
  4. That every man may now, or at any time heereafter shall have Lotts in our said Towne shall pay his share in all such Rates of money and charges as shall be imposed upon him Rateably in pportion with other men. As allso become freely subject unto all such orders and constitutions as shall be necessarily had or made now or at any time hereafter from this day forwarde as well for Loveing and comfortable societie in our said Towne as allso for the psperous and thriveing Condicion of our said Fellowshipe, especially respecting the feare of God in which we desire to begine, and continue whatsoever we shall by his Loveing favoure take in hand.
  5. And for the better manefestation of our true Resolution heere in every man so receaved; to subscribe heere unto his name, there by obligeing both himself and his successors after him forever as we have done.

[There follows 125 signatures of those subscribing to the Covenant, evidently over a period of some years. While all the Morse Signers and Jonathan Fairbanks, Sr. appear to have been among the original signers, the sons of the latter were ages 18, 16 and about 7 years in 1636. The names of the Fairbanks sons appear at intervals from oldest to youngest among the last signers of The Covenant. The signers related to us, in numerical sequence shown, included:

(3) Samuel Morse, and his sons (34) John, (28) Daniel and (29) Joseph /
(31) Jonathan Fairbanks (Fayerbanke), and his sons (98) John, (102) George Fayerbanke and (110) Jonathan Jr. /
(116) John Mason]
Of interest to my Dalton cousins are two possible relatives they include: (4) Philemon Dalton (13) Timothie Dalton

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