Friday, November 10, 2017

Anne Marbury Hutchinson, my 12th Great-grandmother

A few weeks ago, I was watching the PBS program "Finding Your Roots." On this particular episode the host, Henry Louis Gates, outlined the ancestors of Ted Danson. As Gates went back in time I wondered if Danson's ancestor Anne (Marbury) Hutchinson was related to me - and she was.  (See -

Here is Anne’s connection to me:
Anne Marbury (1591 - 1643) 12th great-grandmother
Faith Hutchinson (1617 - 1652) daughter of Anne Marbury - 11th great-grandmother
John Savage (1630 - 1684) son of Faith Hutchinson - 10th great-grandfather
John Savage (1652 - 1726) son of John Savage - 9th great-grandfather
Sarah Savage (1674 - 1733) daughter of John Savage - 8th great-grandmother
John Sutliff (1697 - 1757) son of Sarah Savage - 7th great-grandfather
John Sutlief (1727 - 1816) son of John Sutliff - 6th great-grandfather
Gad Sutlief (1756 - 1842) son of John Sutlief - 5th great-grandfather
Olive Sutlief (1778 - 1819) daughter of Gad Sutlief - 4th great-grandmother
Louisa Sutlief Burdick (1811 - 1863) daughter of Olive Sutlief - 3th great-grandmother
Mariah "Maria" Louise Taylor (1836 - 1913) daughter of Louisa Sutlief Burdick - 2th great-grandmother
William Elroy Gowen (1861 - 1919) son of Mariah "Maria" Louise Taylor - Great-grandfather
Nola Gowen (1902 - 1953) daughter of William Elroy Gowen – Grandmother
Robert Warren Vredenburgh (1929 - 2005) son of Nola Gowen – Father
Larry Mark Vredenburgh (1953- ) son of Robert Warren Vredenburgh
Gates had a lot to say about Anne – so I thought I’d see what more I could find on the internet. I found a nice biography written by Susanne “Sam” Behling. Fortunately, her websites “Notable Women Ancestors” and “Sam’s Genealogy” are still active. Sam died in 2011 at the age of 62.

Sketch of Anne Marbury Hutchinson

From her website I found a link to a book by Eve LaPlante “American Jezebel: The Uncommon Life of Anne Hutchinson, the Woman Who Defied the Puritans.” Amazon had three other books besides this one for sale. Who would have known she was so famous!!

I thought I share Sam’s biography with you.
Anne MARBURY, my 10th great grandmother, was the daughter of Reverend Francis MARBURY and Bridget DRYDEN, and was born in 1591 in Alford, Lincolnshire, England. She married William HUTCHINSON, a merchant, 9 Aug 1612 in London. She and her husband came to America in 1634 with Reverend John Lothrop's group on the ship "Griffin" and settled in Boston.

No stranger to religion, Anne grew up during the persecution of the Catholics and Separatists under Elizabeth and James I. Her father, Rev. Francis Marbury, had been imprisoned twice for preaching against the incompetence of English ministers, though he later became the rector of St. Martin's Vintry, London, rector of St. Pancras, Soper Lane, and finally rector of St. Margaret's, New Fish Street. He was holding two of these offices simultaneously when he died in 1611.

Anne began her involvement with religion quite innocently, using her intelligence to interpret the only book available to her - the Bible. She had followed her beloved minister, Reverend John Cotton, whose removal to New England a year earlier had been "a great trouble to me...I could not be at rest but I must come hither."

The religious climate in the Massachusetts Bay Colony was oppressive. As the colony took hold, ministers emphasized everyone's pious duty to pray, fast and discipline oneself. Noting that the male members of Boston's church met regularly after sermons to discuss the Bible, she started to hold similar meetings for women in her own home. At first the women discussed the previous Sunday's sermons, but before long Anne began telling them of her own beliefs which differed from those of the Boston ministers. She attracted hundreds of women - aided by her reputation as a skilled midwife - and men, too, soon joined her discussion group.

Brilliant, articulate and learned in the Bible and theology, she denied that conformity with the religious laws were a sign of godliness and insisted that true godliness came from inner experience of the Holy Spirit. Anne further exacerbated the local elders by claiming that only two Boston ministers were "elect" or saved, John Cotton and her brother-in-law, John Wheelwright.

Anne's weekly meetings took on a new importance. As many as eighty people filled her house, including "some of the magistrates, some gentlemen, some scholars and men of learning." Among them was Sir Henry Vane, who became governor of the colony in 1636. When Anne, with the aid of Governor Vane and John Cotton, attempted to have her brother-in-law, John Wheelwright installed as minister of the Boston church, most of the congregation supported her. But the pastor of the church, Reverend John Wilson, gave a speech on the "inevitable dangers of separation" caused by the religious dissensions, and joined with John Winthrop in opposing her.
What started as a religious point of difference grew into a schism that threatened the political stability of the colony. To her opponents, questioning the church meant questioning the State. Anne's ideas were branded as the heresy of "Antinomianism" (a belief that Christians are not bound by moral law), and her followers became known as "Antinomians". Intended to be derogatory, the term was erroneously applied to Anne's followers, who did not believe that the inner Holy Spirit released them from obligation to moral law.
The colonial government moved to discipline her and her numerous followers in Boston. In May 1637, Vane lost the governorship to John Winthrop. To prevent new Antinomians from settling, he imposed a restriction on immigrants, among them Anne's brother and several of her friends. In August, eighty-two "heresies" committed by the Antinomians were read at a synod, and a ban was placed on all private meetings.
But Wheelwright continued to preach and Anne now held her meetings twice a week. In November, Winthrop and his supporters filed charges against Anne and Wheelwright, who were then put on trial for heresy before a meeting of the General Court. Intending to prove that Anne's behavior was immoral, Winthrop described her meetings as "a thing not tolerable nor comely in the sight of God, nor fitting for your sex," and accused her of breaking the Fifth Commandment by not honoring her father and mother (in this case, the magistrates of the colony). At this trial, she parried all questions so well that Edmund S. Morgan, a biographer of Gov. John Winthrop, was led to comment that Anne Hutchinson was the governor's "intellectual superior in everything except political judgment; in everything except the sense of what was possible in this world." Answering deftly, Anne came close to clearing herself of all charges. But suddenly, she mentioned that she had had several revelations. The Lord revealed himself to her, she said, "upon a Throne of Justice, and all the world appearing before him, and though I must come to New England, yet I must not fear nor be dismaied," she said. "Therefore, take heed. For I know that for this that you goe about to doe unto me," she threatened, "God will ruin you and your posterity, and this whole State." Winthrop immediately replied, "I am persuaded that the revelation she brings forth is delusion." The court voted to banish her from the colony, "as being a woman not fit for our society".
Wheelwright was exiled and shortly left for New Hampshire while Anne was put under house arrest for the winter to await a church trial in the spring. On March 15, 1638, Anne was brought to trial before the elders of the church of Boston. When her sons and sons-in-law tried to speak on her behalf, John Cotton cautioned them against "hindering" the work of God in healing her soul. To the women of the congregation he said to be careful in listening to her, "for you see she is but a woman and many unsound and dayngerous Principles are held by her."
Once her friend, Cotton now turned full force against her, attacking her meetings as a "promiscuous and filthie coming together of men and women without Distinction of Relation of Marriage," and accused her of believing in free love. "Your opinions frett like a Gangrene and spread like a Leprosie, and will eate out the very Bowells of Religion."
Then Reverend Wilson, whom she had once tried to evict from the Boston church, delivered her excommunication. "I doe cast you out and in the name of Christ I doe deliver you up to Satan, that you may learne no more to blaspheme, to seduce, and to lye."
"The Lord judgeth not as man judgeth," she retored. "Better to be cast out of the church than to deny Christ."
Banished from Boston, Anne Hutchinson with her husband, children and 60 followers settled in the land of Narragansetts, from whose chief, Miantonomah, they purchased the island of Aquidneck (Peaceable Island), now part of Rhode Island. In March, 1638 they founded the town of Pocasset, the Indian name for that locality; the name "Portsmouth" was given to the settlement in 1639. Here they established that colony's first civil government.
After William's death in 1642, Anne took her children, except for five of the eldest, to the Dutch colony in New York. But a few months later, fifteen Dutchmen were killed in a battle between Mahicans and the Mohawks. In August, 1643 the Mahicans raided the Hutchinson house and slaughtered Anne and five of her youngest children. Only one young daughter who was present, Susanna who was taken captive, survived. (Note: Many older sources insist that ALL of Anne's children except her daughter, Susanna were killed with her. This is simply not true. Sons Edward, Richard and Samuel were not present, nor were her eldest daughters, Faith and Bridget, most of whom left numerous descendants.)
The site of Anne's house and the scene of her murder is in what is now Pelham Bay Park, within the limits of New York City, less than a dozen miles from the City Hall. Not far from it, beside the road, is a large glacial boulder, popularly called Split Rock from its division into two parts, probably by the action of frost aided by the growth of a large tree, the stump of which separates the parts. The line of vision of one looking through the split towards Hutchinson River at the foot of the hill will very nearly cross the site of the house. In 1911 a bronze tablet to the memory of Mrs. Hutchinson was placed on Split Rock by the Society of Colonial Dames of the State of New York, who recognized that the resting place of this most noted woman of her time was well worthy of such a memorial. The tablet bears the following inscription:
Banished From the Massachusetts Bay Colony In 1638
Because of Her Devotion to Religious Liberty
This Courageous Woman Sought Freedom From Persecution In New Netherland
Near This Rock in 1643 She and Her Household Were Massacred by Indians

This Table is placed here by the Colonial Dames of the State of New York
Anno Domini MCMXI
Virtutes Majorum Fillae Conservant
Some twentieth century observers credit Anne Hutchinson with being the first American woman to lead the public fight for religious diversity and female quality. In his 1971 biography, Eleanor and Franklin, Joseph P. Lash reported that Eleanor Roosevelt began her list of America's greatest women with Anne Hutchinson. Anne did indeed use her considerable influence as a woman to test the Massachusetts Bay Colony's religious tolerance which, ironically, had been the reason for the settlement.

Friday, May 22, 2015

Humorous 1934 view of Social Security by George Gowen

Nola and her mother Myra Gowen
The Ord Quiz: September 6, 1934

Care of the County Board: By George Gowen

Dear Jake...
My sister [Nola Gowen Vredenburgh], in California, writes that there is a movement there (they have lots of ideas in California) to the effect that the government shall pay every person over sixty years of age two hundred dollars a month. She says that the idea is gaining strength fast and everyone seems to be in favor of it as soon as the proposition is explained to them. There is only one requirement, and that is that the recipient spend the money. In that way we would soon start the circulation of the lucre in the place of soaking it away in the mattress or in the bank to make temptation for the bandits. As soon as this money has become well on its way in the typhoon, prosperity will dawn for all of us.

I am beginning to be converted to the idea myself. My wife's parents are both over sixty and so is my mother. I wish the measure would soon be adopted for not one of the three are of any too good health at the writing. Further, all three of these folks are none too exacting with me. They are the nicest folks to borrow money from I ever saw. They will loan me their last dollar and nearly starve before they ask me to pay them back. Then I would plan to rent my mother a room for about forty per and charge her a dollar for a bottle of milk. Great Guns, Jake, think of the possibilities! And then think of how some of these old folks who are getting a dollar and twenty a week to live on would act. They would sure tell someone where to go in short order. And in place of five dollars a month rent, we might get enough to pay our taxes.

I presume that I better mention how this money is to be raised, although we all know that that is a minor matter now days it is argued that we put on a sales tax of very small denomination. That would be all right. One more little tax on top of all of the others would not be noticed. Of course if there was too much "hollar" about that, we could just have Morgenthau issue some more bonds. No one objects to that way of paying.
George G.

George Gowen, central Nebraska newspaper columnist.

George Gowen, 1922
My grand uncle, George Gowen, who lived in central Nebraska, authored newsy weekly newspaper columns between 1934 & 1941. George farmed near North Loup, Nebraska and supplemented his income by writing columns for the North Loup Loyalist and the Ord Quiz. He also dabbled in writing fictional short stories. These writings depict farm life in the Midwest during the depression and pre-World War II days. In those days farmers were just converting from horses to tractors. Electrifi...cation was gradually coming to rural America. Franklin D. Roosevelt was president during much of this period. Mr. Gowen's writings comment on the government programs of the day and the radical idea of providing social security to the elderly.

George's grandsons David and John Fuehring transcribed these articles, and in 2000 assembled these clippings into two volumes. David posted these articles on a website. Regrettably David passed away in 2009, at the age of 59. Following his death the website was taken down. In 2011 I acquired a copy of the two volume collection of articles from Joan Gowen, Dick Gowen’s widow. Dick was George’s son, and my dad’s first cousin. George’s sister, Nola was my grandmother. They are amazing articles full of my family history. I have only scratched the surface.

I will post a few articles on this blog. But if you are interested in the entire collection, you can download the two volumes:

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

1871 “Rules of Health for Married Ladies.”

The Mining and Scientific Press, published from 1860 until 1922, is legendary for early mining news of the west. The early issues also contained health “tips.” This article, published July 8, 1871, while written “tongue-in-cheek,” must have been, to some extent, a housewife’s daily reality.
Get up at 3 o'clock in the morning, clean out the stove, take up the ashes, sweep the front side walk, and scrub the front steps, nurse the baby, put the mackerel to soak, build the fires, grind the coffee, get out your husband’s things to warm, see the shirt aired, boil the mackerel, settle the coffee, set the table, rouse the house, carry up some hot water for shaving to that brute lazy husband, and dry the morning paper. By this time you will have an appetite for breakfast. Hold the baby during the meal, as you like your breakfast cold.
After breakfast, wash the dishes, nurse the baby, dust everything, wash the windows, and dress the baby-(that pantry needs cleaning out and scrubbing)-nurse the baby, draw the baby five or six miles in the wagon for his health, nurse him when you return; put on the potatoes and the cabbage-nurse the baby-and the corned beef-don't forget to nurse the baby-and the turnips-nurse the baby-sweep everything, take up the dinner, set the table, fill the castors, change the table-cloth-there, that baby wants nursing. Eat your dinner cold again; and nurse the baby.
After dinner wash dishes, gather up all the dirty clothes, and put them to soak; nurse the baby every half hour; receive a dozen calls, interspersed with nursing the baby; drag the baby a mile or two; hurry home; make biscuits, pick up some codfish, cut some dried beef. Catnip tea for baby's internal disarrangement; hold the baby an hour or two to quiet him; put some alcohol in the metre; baby a specimen of perpetual motion; tea ready; take yours cold, as usual.
After tea, wash up the dishes, put some fish to soak; chop some hash; send for some more sugar; (good gracious! how that sugar does go, and thirteen cents a pound;) get down the stockings and darn them…keep on nursing the baby-wait up till 12 o'clock, nursing the baby till husband comes home with a double shuffle on the front steps, a difficulty in finding the stairway, and a determination to sleep in the back yard.-Drag him up stairs to bed; then nurse the baby and go to sleep.
Women in delicate health will find that the above practice will either kill or cure them.

No More Babies in U. S. After 2015, Savant Says

In 1978 I was granted permission to research and make copies of the Barstow Printer newspaper, by the manager Desert Dispatch of the Barstow, California. Of course I was there to research mining history, but this article caught my eye. Since it is timely – I thought I’d share it with you – for a laugh! I guess you can prove anything with statistics.
No More Babies in U. S. After 2015, Savant Says
Barstow Printer 6 Jan 1911
St Louis, Jan 4. There will be no children in the United States under 5 years of age in the year 2020. Babies, accordingly, will have disappeared from this country as early as 2015.
This is the mathematical conclusion of Prof. Walter F. Wilcox of Cornell University, announced to the American Statistical association this afternoon. The only hope of securing babies in the United States after 2020, according to Prof. Wilcox’s calculation, is in possible importation from France.
He says France will continue to have babies eighty years after the United States has quit.
In 1978 I was granted permission to research and make copies of the newspaper, by the manager Desert Dispatch of the Barstow, California. While I was interested in Mojave Desert mining history, this article caught my eye. Since it is timely – I thought I’d share it with you – for a laugh! I guess you can prove anything with statistics.

Monday, May 18, 2015

Why "Melange?"

On September 5, 1997, I created a website which over time has evolved into I named this website "A Melange of Websites." Initially I posted my Vredenburgh family history here but over time it has expanded to to include sections on General Land Office Patents in California, Mojave Desert Mining History, Tehachapi California History, Carrizo Plain History and of course Family History. Lots of family history

Why melange you may ask? Synonyms include: "mixture, medley, assortment, blend, variety, mixed bag, potpourri, patchwork, mishmash, jumble, hodgepodge...." While writing geology reports for the BLM I was introduced to the Franciscan Formation that occurs along California's Coast Ranges. This Formation is often referred to as a melange. It is a complex chaotic assemblage of diverse rock types. is a certainly a diverse assemblage of my interests.

On April 4 2015, I established a Facebook page: " A Melange of Websites" on which I have highlighted content on my website but I have also authored new articles for the Facebook site. But alas, unless you are a Facebook subscriber you can't view them. Yes there are a few  people on earth that don't have a Facebook account... my mother being one of them. So, I will copy the articles here as well. This canvas is a much better place to layout photos and text anyway!

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

A Surprise Connection

I co-teach a Life Focus Group (aka. Sunday School class) at the Tehachapi Nazarene Church. We are going through the Sermon on the Mount, and two weeks ago it was my turn to teach from Matthew 5:11-12.

"Blessed are you when they revile and persecute you, and say all kinds of evil against you falsely for My sake. Rejoice and be exceedingly glad, for great is your reward in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you."

About the same time we began teaching from this passage, I stumbled on a series of sermons by John Piper on the Beatitudes. His sermon that covers this passage is appropriately titled Blessed Are the Persecuted.  Jesus' words are never easy. In fact they are impossible without the in filling of Holy Spirit. (All things are possible with God!) But this one, "Blessed... Rejoice and be glad" when you are persecuted! Whew! Yet if you stop and think about it, Jesus is saying store your treasure in heaven, not on the earth (Matt. 6:19-20).

In this passage Jesus encourages us to consider the prophets who went before us (also see Hebrews 11:36-38). In his sermon John Piper suggested that we consider those who rejoiced though facing suffering and death since Jesus walked the earth.

Some of people whose testimonies Piper presented I knew, many I did not. One I person I hadn't heard of was Obadiah Holmes.  John Piper wrote the following regarding him, "What moved Obadiah Holmes, after ninety lashes turned his back to jelly for Jesus, to say to the magistrates, "You have struck me with roses"? " 

I was curious to learn more about Obadiah, so I went to the fount of knowledge and looked him up.

This incident is described in Wikipedia:

"In 1650 he and others were taken to court for their religious views and practices, and compelled to leave the colony [Massachusetts]. He settled in Newport in the Rhode Island colony and soon befriended John Clarke and John Crandall. In July 1651 these three men, while visiting an elderly friend in Lynn, Massachusetts, were apprehended, tried, and given exorbitant fines for their religious practices. Friends paid the fines for Clarke and Crandall, but when Holmes learned of this he refused to allow them to pay his fine. Six weeks after trial he was taken to the whipping post in Boston and given 30 strokes, which were laid on so harshly that for weeks afterward Holmes could only sleep while on his knees and elbows."

A Surprise Connection 

Not to take away from Obadiah's suffering and his super natural response, after reading this I had to stop. I audibly said to myself, "Wait, I know John Crandall." John Crandall is an ancestor of mine, an 8th great grandfather.  In my last blog I wrote of my 2nd great grandfather, Oscar Babcock. John Crandall was Oscar's 3rd great grandfather. Small world.