Family Group

Parents   Parents
        William Crowcomb  
           
           
 
HUSBAND   WIFE
John Parker Immigrant Ancestor Mary Crocome Immigrant Ancestor
bp. 20 Apr 1601 in Georgeham, Devon, England b. 20 Jan 1600 in Georgeham, Devon, England
d. bf. Jun 1661 in Georgetown, Sagadahoc, Maine d. Aft 29 Jun 1671 in Georgetown, Sagadahoc, Maine
 
Relationship Events
Marriage 16 Nov 1622 John Parker to Marie Crocome in Georgeham, Devon, England
     
     
 
Children
James Parker bp. 5 Sep 1627 and d. in Georgeham, Devon, England
John Parker bp. 12 Feb 1628 and d. in Georgeham, Devon, England
Thomas Parker  bp. 9 Feb 1629, Georgeham, Devon, England; m. Unknown; d. abt. 1650 in Georgetown, Sagadahoc, Maine); seven children: Grace, Sarah, Mary, Remember, John, Jacob, Margaret; d. Between 1684-1690, Georgetown, Sagadahoc, Maine
John Parker  bp. 13 Jun 1632, Georgeham, Devon, England; m. 20 Aug 1660 in Boston, Suffolk, Massachusetts Mary Fairfield (b. 7 May 1643 in Boston, Suffolk, Massachusetts, d. ?); six children: Sarah Daniel, James, Elizabeth, Hannah, Margaret;  d. 1 Jun 1690, Falmouth, Cumberland, Maine 
Mary Parker bp. 25 Jul 1635, Georgeham, Devon, England; m. 1656 in Charlestown, Suffolk, Massachusetts, Capt. Thomas Webber (Bef 17 May 1629  in Bideford, Devon, England, d. Bef Feb 1687 in Falmouth, Cumberland, Maine) d. bef. 14 Feb 1714 in Arrowsic, Maine

What We Know About This Family


Noteworthy

John Parker is noted for having bought the island of Roscohegan (now Georgetown, Maine) from the Indian called by the English "Robin Whood" or Hood. He and his family lived among the Indians, engaged in transactions with them, but also experienced the violence of the wars with the Indians. John and Mary's son, John, and his son, James, were both killed by Indians at Fort Loyal. His granddaughter, Grace, and her husband David Oliver, our direct ancestors, were driven from the island to Marblehead, but returned after the wars finished. John's daughter, Mary, was living in Charlestown at age 53 when she testified in one of the Salem witchcraft trials.

An Overview of Their Lives

Records exist of another and older John Parker venturing around this area. He was believed by many to be the father of this John Parker. (It's possible that he was). I initially had the older John Parker on this site as the son of William Parker, a privateer for Queen Elizabeth, and the father of this John. This initial information was included in a book, "Ancient Sagadahoc." I have included a .PDF file of the old web page of John Parker, supposed son of William and supposed father to our John Parker of Bideford, Devon, England, in the documents section, but with the warning that based on Steve Moore's research (see below), it is not correct. It nevertheless makes for interesting information about the Popham Colony in Maine, a colony that pre-existed Plymouth and Jamestown, but was abandoned. Author Steve Moore writes the following:

Unfortunately, virtually everything about Captain William Parker, his brother John and his brother's son, John, as reported in Ancient Sagadahoc, is inaccurate. For a book I am writing I have researched several thousand hours about the Captain. Captain William Parker’s brother, John, was a blacksmith and Burgess in Southampton, England. There is no record that he ever went to sea. Captain William Parker married a Wilmot Rogett, not a Katherine Dennis. Their son, John, was baptized in 1607/08, and went to work as an apprentice seaman for the East India Company after his father, Captain William Parker, died in its service en route to Bantam, East Indies in 1618. There is no evidence whatsoever that the John Parker of Biddeford was any relation to these Parkers. Parish records for St Andrews in Plymouth, Devon, England, substantiate the marriage of Captain William Parker, as well as the baptisms of almost all of his known children. Although Captain Parker was a patentee of the Virginia Company of Plymouth, which attempted to settle the Popham Colony at Sagadahoc, none of these Parkers, including the Captain himself, ever sailed to New England or explored the coast of Africa. Although Captain William Parker's brother, John Parker of Southampton, England clearly died in 1612 without any sons named John, I do leave open the possibility that Captain William Parker's own son named John, born 1607/1608 could have been the John Parker who settled near the mouth of the Kennebec around 1629/1630. Captain Parker’s son, John, was undoubtedly very well acquainted with Ferdinando Gorges, Robert Trelawney, Moses Goodyear, Abraham Jennens, Leonard Pomeroy and others who were active Plymouth (England) investors in the settlement of Maine. It is conceivable that, if John survived his apprenticeship with the East India Company, he could have later turned his attention to settlement in the New World, as did his older brother, Nicholas Parker of Roxbury and Boston.

Our descendant, John Parker settled with his family in Winter Harbor, Maine, between the birth of his last child in England who was baptized 25 July 1635 and when John Parker, head of household on 7 Sep 1636 in the Winter Harbor book of rates, was assessed a tax of 1 pound for support of the minister.  John died between 31 Oct 1651 when he made his will and 20 Nov 1661 when the Deed for Parker’s Island was confirmed to his widow, Mary Crocome Parker by Robinhood at her house in Sagadahoc, Maine.

Massachusetts court records 20 May 1645 state that Robert Nash, a coastal trader out of Mass Bay on a voyage stopped in to Strattons Island Plantation. He began selling sack, a white wine imported from the south of Europe, to the island fishermen. Nash was himself consuming a large quantity and was, according to depositions, soon very drunk and giving it away. John Parker also arrived there about this time with a number of fishermen either to or from Damariscove, and his men quickly joined the islanders in lining up for free drinks, as did Nash’s own crew. From all accounts Parker did not join in, but couldn’t deter his men from getting drunk. Testimony of John Parker:

John Parkar of Damarills Cove affermeth that Robart nash being with him gaue & sould so much sack to his men that nash himself and parkers men were all so drunk for seuarall dais together that his men could not goe to Sea in the prime tyme of fishing whereby the said parkar & his company lost 40 or 50 pownds by the misdemeanors of said nash.

In 1649 John Parker purchased Roscohegan Island (later renamed as Parker Island) from Chief Mowhatawormit, who signed the deed with his mark, and his name was given as Robert Hood (Whood). The land involved was described as lying to the eastward side of "Sacittihock River's mouth" running northeast to the "Shipscut River".

John Parker lived on Arrowsic and was in the fishing trade until Indian raids drove him to the west bank of the Kennebec. He later returned to Stage (Sagadahoc) Island, where others from Parker’s Island found refuge from King Philip’s depredations. John Parker built a home on the lower end of Parker's Island facing the sea, and until his death prior to Nov. 20, 1661, lived there with his wife Mary. The fort there was evacuated in 1689 and no further attempts were made to settle Parker’s Island and Arrowsic until 1710. At Indian Point (then Sagadahoc Point) there had been an Indian raid in 1662. The land was held by the Parker family until 1748.

John Parker made out a will in October 1651. Probate was administered on his estate on November 20, 1661. According to the confirmation secured by Mary Parker in 1661, this was a portion of what is now Georgetown Island. This confirmation read:

I Robert W. Hood, Sagamore of Sacatyhock and Kennebeck have formerly sold unto John Parker Sen of Sacatyhock and his heirs a Tract of land on the Easter Side of Sacatyhock being an island commonly called by the mane of Sagosett alias Chegoney by the Indians I say having sold the island with all the Islets Appurtenences and Privleges whatsoever due to the Tract of Land belong or anyways appertain and having given him a Deed of Sale for the assurance of his right thereto bearing Date One thousand Six hundred Fourty and eight and that the now the said John Parker being deceased I the above said Rober Whood do of my own voluntary will and consent confirm the said Deed.
Mary Crocombe Parker was still living in 1671 when she deeded a parcel of land to her son, Thomas.

About the Children

  • Thomas Parker was perhaps married to a woman named Mary Shaw. On June 29, 1671, Mary Parker, the widow of John, conveyed to her son Thomas and his heirs “the house and field and parcel of marsh bounded by the creek lying upon the westward side (Little River). Sarah Parker, daughter of Thomas, and her husband Matthew Salter, also lived on the lower end of Parker’s Island until driven off by Indians. His daughter, Grace, married David Oliver, and the couple made their home there before and after the Indian Wars, living in between in Marblehead. Thomas is our direct ancestor and has his own family group page.

  • John Parker married Mary, daughter of Daniel Fairfield in Boston in 1660. Their first two children, Mary (who died in infancy), and Elizabeth were born in Boston. Their sons, James and Daniel, were born probably in Georgetown by 1667. John purchased from the Indians a tract of land that comprises the present town of Phipsburg and part of West Bath. He was more than once driven off by Indians. The family was recorded in Charlestown in 1676 and again in 1689. He and his son, James, returned to Georgetown, and fled from Indians once more to Falmouth (now Portland, Maine) where on 1 Jun 1690 they were both killed in the capture of Fort Loyal. That event caused the near de-population of European settlers in Maine. More detailed accounts of John's descendants and the battle at Fort Loyal appear in the Documents section.

  • Mary Parker married Thomas Webber. Thomas was living at Reskeagan [now Georgetown], an island near the mouth of the Kennebec, as early as 1649. He married Mary by 1661 when her father's will was probated. He owned immense tracts of land reaching from Kennebec river to Casco Bay. Webber had 300 acres of farmland on Webber Point, and also had a farm on Webber Island where he raised sheep. Thomas and Mary (Parker) Webber had five sons, who settled in the areas of Falmouth and Harpswell, and it is probable from these sons that most of the Maine Webbers are descended. The Indian wars, beginning in 1688 and lasting about ten years, drove the Webbers into Massachusetts, where they lived at Charlestown and Gloucester.

    Mary Parker Webber was about  53 years old when she testified in the  Burroughs Witch Trial in Salem 2 Aug 1692. She repeated accusations she heard from Burroughs' deceased wife.  Her son, Samuel Webber, also testified about Burroughs’ unnatural strength. Tragically, their testimony along with that of 28 others resulted in his death by hanging.

    Salem – 2 Aug 1692 Mary Webber wid aged aboute 53 years Testifieth and sayth that she liveing at Casco Bay aboute six or seaven years agoe, when George Burroughs was Minester at s’d place, and liveing anner — Neighbour to s’d Burroughs, was well acquainted with his wife w’ch was dauter to mr John Ruck of Salem she hath heard her tell much of her husband unkindness to her and that she dare not wright to her father to acquaint [him] how it was with her, and soe desired mee to wright to her father that he would be pleased to send for her and told mee she had beene much affrighted, and that something in the night made anoise in the chamber where she lay as if one Went aboute the Chamber, and she calling up the negro. to come to her the negro not Comeing sayd that she could not Come some thing stopt her, then her husband being called he came up. some thing Jumped down from between the Chimney & the side of the house and Run down the stairs and s’d Burroughs followed it down, and the negro then s’d it was something like a white calfe: another tyme lyeing with her husband some thing came into the house and stood by her bed side and breathed on her, and she being much affrighted at it, would have awakened her husband but could not for a considerable tyme, but as soone as he did awake it went away., but this I heard her say. and know nothing of it myselfe otherwise Except by common report of others also concerning such things.rt of others also concerning such things Salem.

    August 2, 1692


    Massachusetts Historical Society )


Proof of Relationship

Baptism records from England exist for five of John's children. One identifies the mother as "Mary." The various deeds and wills confirm the relationship. The dates of birth and place vary from source to source, but I believe the baptism records from England are correct for the three children who survived the trip to America.

What Else We Need to Learn

The goal of this project is to trace every line of ancestry to the arrival of its first immigrant to America. The basic information of each couple is considered complete when we know the dates of birth, marriage, and death for both spouses. their parents' names (or whether they were the immigrant), and the child or children in our ancestry line.

The research on this family is complete unless it is discovered that John Parker, husband of Mary Crocombe, was the son of the older John Parker who was recorded in this part of Maine. Genealogical research on this family continues by many since the Parkers have hundreds if not thousands of descendants including General Abraham Eustis, for whom Fort Eustis was named, and the actress Barbara Stanwyck (Ruby Stevens). Records of early settlers are often something of a puzzle as evidenced by some of the conflicts in the documents presented here. Complicating the puzzle was the fact that three John Parkers were present in early Maine, and their records have sometimes been confused.

 

Questions, Comments, or New Information -Email lee@leewiegand.com