The Fall River French family here considered springs from the early Rehoboth family of the name, and it, as will be observed further on, according to Savage, perhaps from the Dorchester family. John French, the head of the Dorchester family and the immigrant ancestor, was a native of England, born in 1612. He had land granted him at what became Braintree for five heads Feb. 24, 1639-40. He was admitted to the church in the adjoining town of Dorchester, Jan. 27, 1642, and the births of his first two children are recorded in Dorchester. He became a freeman May 29, 1639. He was active and prominent among the early settlers. His son John was born Feb. 28, 1641.
Location: Newport Rhode Island
The Read family of which the late Paddock Richmond Read was a descendant, is one of the oldest and best known families of this section of New England. The first of the name in New England wasJohn Reade, a cordwainer by trade, according to tradition, as is his coming from Plymouth, England. He came to this country and was an inhabitant of Newport, R. I.
For the past hundred years – during almost the lifetime, as it were, of Fall River and its entire industrial life – the name Slade has been continually identified with that industrial life and also prominent in other lines of effort in that great city of spindles. In 1812-13, when the real substantial pioneer establishments in the cloth making industry of Fall River were projected and completed – the Troy Cotton and Woolen Manufactory and the Fall River Manufactory – began the Slade name in this connection, Eber Slade of Somerset being one of the most prominent promoters of one of the corporations; he became its first treasurer and filled the position until in the middle twenties. William Slade of Somerset was one of the owners of the site of these first establishments, and was himself an original proprietor of the Pocasset and Watuppa Manufacturing Companies. The brothers Jonathan and William Lawton Slade were among the founders of the celebrated cotton mills of Fall River, both becoming presidents of the corporation. John Palmer Slade, another of Somerset’s sons, figured largely not only in the industrial life of the city but in other lines, becoming president of both the Shove and Laurel Lake Mills. George W. Slade, one of the “forty-niners” of the Pacific coast, was for full fifty years one of the extensive and wholesale merchants of Fall River and his name, too, is coupled with the city’s industrial life. And of younger generations one or more of the sons of some of these are at this time officially and otherwise connected with this industrial life and in other lines, notably Leonard N. and Everett N. Slade, of the firm of John P. Slade & Son, insurance and real estate; David F. Slade, member of the law firm of Slade & Borden; and Abbott E. Slade, now treasurer of the Laurel Lake Mills.
Walter Ballou, one of the representative citizens and well-known jewelry manufacturers of North Attleboro, where for upward of a half century he has been a member of the jewelry manufacturing firm of R. Blackinton & Co., is a native of the State of Rhode Island, born in the town of Cumberland Feb. 20, 1835, son of Preston and Harriet M. (Brown) Ballou. The Ballou family is among the oldest and most distinguished of Rhode Island. Of Norman-French origin, it is descended from Gunebored Ballou, who was probably a marshal in the army of William the Conqueror and took part in the memorable battle of Hastings, 1066.
The Rodman family was early settled in Massachusetts. The first of the name of whom there is authentic record was John Rodman, who died on the island of Barbadoes some time between Sept. 16 and Dec. 4, 1686. Thomas Rodman, son of John, born Dec. 26, 1640, came to Newport, R. I, from the island of Barbadoes in 1675, with William Edmundson, a “Friend,” who was on a religious visit to Barbadoes. He (Thomas) was a prominent member of the Society of Friends, and was clerk of the monthly, quarterly and yearly meetings for thirty years. He was also the first clerk of the New England Yearly Meeting, which position he held until 1718, He was an eminent physician and surgeon. His death occurred Jan. 11, 1728.
The Vigneron family to which Mr. Spare belongs in the maternal line is descended from Norbert Felician Vigneron, who was baptized June 6, 1670, in the town of LaVentie, Province of Artois, Diocese of Arras, in the French Netherlands. He was the son of Anthony and Anne Therese (de Beaussart) Vigneron. The date of his coming to this country is uncertain, but his marriage to Susanna Peirce, daughter of Joanna Peirce, of Newport, took place in Newport, R. I.
MAJ. WILLIAM HUNT GOFF, one of Attleboro’s well known citizens and leading public men, is a native of the Old Bay State, born in the town of Rehoboth, April 10, 1845. He is a descendant of one of the oldest families of Rehoboth, where the Goffs have figured more or less prominently, as well as in the nearby towns in Rhode Island, since about 1720, the date of which there is record of the families of Richard and Samuel Goff. From these two men have sprung a number whose names have been written high on the roll of fame in
Through three generations the Dyer family of Fall River, descendants of Jonathan Dyer, have been actively and prominently identified with the city’s commercial and social life; especially prominent has been for some forty years there in the great industrial life the present David Hartwell Dyer, who has been officially connected with a number of the large mills and is of the firm of D. H. Dyer & Son, civil and mechanical engineers, of which the junior member, George F. Dyer, is a thoroughly educated and expert electrical engineer.
Probably no name in the history of New Bedford brings more clearly or forcibly to mind a man of large affairs, of broad charity and generous impulse, of high purpose and of exemplary citizenship, than does that of the late William Watkins, whose long life in commercial and financial circles made him a part of the progress and development of this community. William Watkins, son of Capt. Thomas and Mary (Davis) Watkins, was born in the village of Westport Point, Mass., June 22, 1814. He attended the country schools until he reached the age of fourteen years…
At New Bedford, this Commonwealth, a point so long famous the world round for its whaling industry, a business carried on to an extent and success that made it the wealthiest place in proportion to its population of any point in New England, and a city that has since been hardly less conspicuous as a cotton manufacturing point, there still reside representatives of the Rotch family; here where, since the middle of the eighteenth century, have lived seven or eight generations of Rotches, than whom as a family perhaps no other has had greater influence in developing New Bedford’s character and prosperity and shaping its history.