Wife: Jane Clapp (3)
11th Great Grandmother
05 (M): Thomas Weekes
He emigrated with his wife, Jane, and children about 1636 aboard the "John and Mary". The ship left Plymouth England with 140 passengers. The families were recruited by Revered John White of Dorchester. These people formed Dorchester, one of the first towns in Massachusetts. There he took the oath of a Freeman and served as Selectman for several years.
Based upon his personal research Walter Weeks makes the following observations about who Georges father may have been:
There was a William Wyke of Whimple, Devon who left a will 9 Feb. 1611; pr. 13 April 1611 in which he names a cousin William Weekes of Woodbury and this William's 3 children. George, John and Agnes. Wyke also mentions an unnamed brother, the brother's son John Weekes who had children.; a servant/cousin Thomas Weekes, a servant/cousin Johanne Weekes, God children., and 6 other servants. The will spells the last names as I have written them Wyke and Weekes even though they are related. William Wyke leaves 20a of land to William Weekes' son George. George Weekes, batchelor, sells this same 20a in east and west of Beathaye to a Michael Wright of Broadhembury in 1620. Whether this is our George is subject to debate but since he sells this land in 1620 one could assume that he came of age which places him at the right age to marry Jane Clapp whose birthday has been portrayed as 1597 to 1604.
We also know that George leases a cottage and land 30 Sept. 1630 from a John Willoughby in Seaton Parish aka Beer/Seaton today. We also know that in the same year a John Weekes, shipwright leases a cottage and land in Seaton as well, could this be George's brother. John mentioned in the will? 20 Jan. 1633/4 George surrenders a lease of land and cottages in Seaton? and is called a Yeoman. In 1670 there is an Administration of John Weekes of Seaton filed.
Most people probably assume American women first began to organize collectively in the 20th century, however the first such political action by American women occurred in 1649. On May 2, 1649, the Massachusetts General Court passed a law forbidding either physicians or midwives from exercising any force, violence, or cruelty upon or towards the bodies of any, whether young or old. Mistress Alice Tilly, a midwife, was accused of taking action that violated this law.
Six petitions and a deposition were written on behalf of Tilly, 4 from Boston and 2 from Dorchester, MA. There were 294 signatures, ranging from a low of 8 to a high of 130. Most of the signatures came from women in their childbearing years or, the mothers or mothers-in-law of such women. One of those signatures on the 2nd Dorchester petition belonged to my 11X Grandmother or perhaps her daughter (my 10X Great Aunt) also named Jane. The deposition by another midwife detailed a variety of situations that might arise during childbirth and contended that methods of handling them were common rather than unusual or cruel. The female petitioners disagreed with the male authorities assessment of Mistress Tilly. One petition called her "the ablest midwife in the land.". Another expressed confidence in her, stating they were afraid to put themselves into the hands of anyone “besides our midwife that wee have had experience of."
The picture that surviving documents create is that Tilly was the preeminent Boston midwife, the one most likely to be summoned in desperate cases. The first set of 3 petitions submitted before her trial, asked that she be permitted to leave jail to attend her patients. The 4th petition was written after she had been tried and convicted, renewed the request and referring to "sad events" that had occurred because of her absence. Led by the wife of the chief pastor of the Boston church, 26 female Bostonians begged the judges to "heare the cryes of mothers, and of children yet unborn." Her husband eventually threatened to move the family elsewhere "unless her innocencie may be cleared." In spring 1650, the final 2 petitions asked the court for her freedom.
Officials, asserted that there was "as much need to upphold magistracy in their authority as Mris Tilly in her midwivery." The women reminded the General Court that they wrote not just for themselves but also on behalf of "the security of your children." They were successful, the Tillys still resided in Boston fifteen years later. No doubt that the fate of Mistress Alice Tilly would have been quite different had women not gotten involved.
THE WILL OF JANE HUMPHREY
I Jane Humphery, being weake in Body, & not knowinge howe soone the Lord may take me hence, doe this 29th of the Eleauenth month 1666, declare how I would have my goods disposed of after my decease. I give to my sonn Williams wife, ye jump which was my sister Sarah Clap's, Also my best Redd Kersey petticoate & sad gray Kersey Wascoate, my blemmish Searge Petticoate & my best hatt, my white fustian Wascott, a wrought napkin with noe lace about it, a black silke neck-cloath, a glass quart Bottle, a handkerchife, a blew Apron, a plaine black quaife without lace, a white Holland apron with a small lace at the bottome. I Give to my sonn Amiells wife, a redd Searge Petticoate & a blackis Searge Petticoate, a blackish carsey Wascoate, a greene searg & my hood & muffe. Also my greene Linsey woolsey petticoate, my whittle that is fringed & my jump; my blew short coate, my white tufted Holland wastcoate, A thin Chifte and another chifte a wrought napkin with noe lace about it; a handkerchife, a blew Apron, my best black quaife with a lace, a black Stuffe neckcloath, a white locrum Apron with two bredths in it. Six yards of Redd cloath, if it will hold out after all things bee discharged; a green under Coate. I Give to my daughter Jane, my staning kerse Coate & my murry Wastcoate, my Cloake & my blew under Wastcoate, a pare of fine sheets; a holland Table cloath, halfe a duzzen of napkins, my best white Apron, my wrought platter; a pare of pillow beers; my best shift, one napkin wrought about & laced; my little chest & one of my best neck-clothes, one of my best plain quaifes, my best holland square cloath with a little lace & one Calico under neck-cloath. a stone jugg, a yard of Holand that is hemmed and marked with an J. a siluer spoone & my wedding Ring. I Give to my son, Joseph Weekes, my great old chest, my best brass pann, two platters a bigger & a lesser. & my best Cover lide; my booke of Mr. Burroughs Gospell Worship, a sheet of Cotton & linnen, also a Table cloath. I Give to my Grandchild, Amiell Weekes, my bedsted and bed & chaffe boulster & my Rugg. To my Grandchild, Ebenezer, my Feather Boulster & a pare of new blanckets. To my Grandchild, Thankfull, two pillows, two old Pillow beers & my skillet. To my Grandchild Elizabeth, Amiels Daughter, my now great chest, my spinning wheele, my little brass pan & my little Bible; Also I give unto Thankfully the biggest of my small boxes. To my grandchild, Jane Weeks, one of my best platters. To my grandchild. Renew, my lesser small Box. To my sonn, Amiell, my Great Bible. To my sonn Amiell & William Tenn pounds of hemp yarne & Cotton yarn to put upon it. to be Equally devided betweene them. I give to my sonn, Amiell, Mr. Burroughs Booke of Gospell Conversation & my psalme booke. Also my Cowe. I Give to my sonn. William, my booke of Mr. Shepherds workes, also 15 shillings. I give tenn shillings to my grandchild. Jolm Weeks, 6c to Each of the other of my sonn Williams Children, Fine shillings, if there bee soemuch remaininge when things be discharged. I Give to ray sonn in Law, Benjamin Sate, Mr. Taylors booke on the 32 psalme. I Give to my sister, Jone Clap, a fine thine neck-cloth & a Square cloth with a little lace upon it. I Give to sister, Susannah Clap, the next best neck-cloth to that of Sister Jones, & square Cloth. I Give to ray Cousen. Hannah Clap, my next best neck-cloath & the next best Square Cloth & whatsoever Else I haue I Give to my Sonn, Amiell, whom I make my Executer. I Give my best greene Apron to Mary Atherton. This being my last will & Testament, I witness my hand in p'sence of us.
The marke of Jane X Humfrey.
Note) A jump is a short coat or woman's bodice. A whittle is a white dress for a woman. A double blanket style worn by west country English women over the shoulder like a cloak
Married: about 1625, England
Revised: March 22, 2013
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