Thursday, July 28, 2011

William GAGER 11th Great Grandfather - Great Migration Begins


ORIGIN: Little Waldingfield, Suffolk
REMOVES: Boston 1630
CHURCH MEMBERSHIP: Admitted to Boston church as member #8, which would be no later than 27 August 1630, as he was made deacon of the church on that day; the entry is followed by the annotation "dead since" [BChR 13; WJ 1:38].
EDUCATION: Sufficient to be a surgeon.
OFFICES: 23 August 1630: "It was propounded what should be Mr. Gager's maintenance. Ordered, that he should have a house builded him against the next spring; is to have a cow given him, & £20 in money for this year, to begin the 20th of June, 1630, & after £30 per annum. All this to be at the common charge" [MBCR 1:74].
BIRTH: Baptized Little Waldingfield, Suffolk, 15 June 1592, son of "John Gagar."
DEATH: 20 September 1630 [WJ 1:40].
MARRIAGE: By 1618 [Hannah MAYHEW]; d. Boston by 29 November 1630 [WP 2:320].
CHILDREN (all baptized and buried Little Waldingfield, Suffolk):

i SARAH, bp. 6 August 1618; bur. 27 April 1627.

ii JOHN, bp. 25 May 1620 (deposed 25 April 1653 aged "about thirty years" [WP 6:281]); m. by 1647 Elizabeth Gore [Granberry 224].

iii WILLIAM, bp. 31 March 1622; bur. 26(?) April 1622.

iv WILLIAM, bp. 11 May 1623; bur. 12 April 1626.

v REBECCA, bp. 11 May 1625; bur. [late May or early June] 1625.

vi WILLIAM, bp. 27 April 1626; bur. 5 May 1626.

vii THOMAS, bp. 13 July 1627; bur. 6 October 1627.

viii SARAH, bp. 29 June 1628; d. Boston by 29 November 1630 [WP 2:320]. [m. 1642 Robert ALLYN]

ix REBECCA, bp. 25 April 1630; d. Boston by 29 November 1630 [WP 2:320].

COMMENTS: In a letter directed to "our loving friend Mr. Gager at Litle Waldingfield in Suffolk" about 1629/30, John Winthrop wrote:
Sir, Being informed of your good inclination to the furtherance of this work which (through the Lord's good providence) we are in hand with for the establishing of a church in N.E., and having sufficient assurance of your godliness and abilities in the art of surgery to be of much use to us in this work, being informed also, that the place where you live doth not afford you such sufficient and comfortable employment as your gifts do require, we have thought good to offer you a call to join with us, and become a member of our society: your entertainment shall be to your good content; if you like to accept this motion, we desire you would prepare to go with us this spring. If you come up to London we shall be ready to treat further with you [WP 2:199].
It was a fateful call. In a letter to his wife dated 29 November 1630, John Winthrop enumerated the twelve members of "my family" who had died by that date, and included among them "Mr. Gager and his man: Smith of Buxall and his wife and 2: children" [WP 2:320].
In his letter to the Countess of Lincoln Thomas Dudley reported that "about the beginning of September died Mr. Gager, a right godly man, a skillful chirugeon, and one of the deacons of our congregation ..." [Dudley 72].
When the last of the Gager children was baptized in Little Waldingfield, the main body of the Winthrop Fleet had already departed for New England. There were, however, several ships which sailed in May [Young's First Planters 311] and the Gager family (or at least the mother and newborn child) must have come across at that time.
William Gager and his family, given their close connection with John Winthrop, very likely made the move from Charlestown to Boston in early September, and so that is given as the place of death of William, his wife and two daughters.
The order of the Court to provide maintenance for Gager does not state the service that he was to provide, but it may have been as a surgeon to the whole colony. The starting date for his term of service, 20 June 1630, was a Sunday shortly after the Winthrop Fleet had arrived in New England, and was the day of their return from scouting out Charlestown as the place they would settle.
On 29 October 1639 John Winthrop made out a will which was later revoked, in which was the following bequest: "I will that Jo[hn] Gager shall have a cow one of the best I shall have, in recompense of a heifer his father bought of me, and an 2 ewe goats and 10 bushels of Indian corn" [WP 4:147]. In about August 1646 William Morton of New London passed on to John Winthrop Jr. the desire of John Gager to "buy him a shirt cloth" [WP 5:94].
BIBLIOGRAPHIC NOTE: Jacobus prepared an excellent treatment of this family, including the evidence needed to identify the wife of John Gager [Granberry 223-25].
The Great Migration Begins

Ancestry Chain: 11th gr grandfather William GAGER
Immigrant b.1592, Sarah GAGER Immigrant b.1620, Hannah ALLYN b.1650, Joanna ROSE b.1678, Joanna AVERY b.1700, Hannah ALLEN b.1734, Lucretia NEEDHAM b.1760, Shadrach ROUNDY b.1789, Almeda Sophia ROUNDY b.1829, Charles PARKER b.1853, Laura Elizabeth PARKER b.1889, Kirt DeMar WOOD b.1923, Lark, TR.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

It would be worth knowing whether this gentleman was a kinsman of the famous Oxford poet-playwright William Gager of Long Melford, Suffolk (who had both a grandfather and a paternal uncle named John). If anybody has any information about this please contact