Nelson Genealogy William Nelson, an early comer to Plymouth, before 1636, had land granted him Aug. 3, 1640, and was among those able to bear arms in 1643. He was juryman in 1648. He was probably among the first settlers of Middleboro, although it is impossible to state when he went from Plymouth to Middleboro, or how long he lived there. He married Oct. 27, 1640, Martha Ford, daughter of Widow Ford, who came to Plymouth in the ship “Fortune” in 1621. Mr. Nelson was admitted a freeman in Plymouth in 1658 and took the oath of fidelity the next
LYSANDER FRANKLIN GURNEY, late of Brockton, Plymouth Co., Mass., was a descendant of some of the earliest settlers of this section. Going back to the mother country, we find the following general information in “The Gurneys of Earlham” (two volumes, Hart, Mich., March 16, 1906).
The Norfolk Gurneys claim descent from the ancient Barons of Gournay in Normandy, where the curious Ports Ibert with many old towers of the walls and the twelfth century church of Saint Hildevert attest the wealth and power of its ancient lords. Several members of the House accompanied William the Conqueror to England, and fought at the battle of Hastings, after which the valor of the aged Hugh de Gurney III. was rewarded by the establishment of the English Barony of Gourney, held by tenure of military service and by large grants of land, so that he has left his name of Baron Gourney in Somerset and several other places in England. The story of the “House of Gourney” is told in a magnificent history by Daniel Gurney of Juncton Hall, near Norwich, County of Norfolk, England, which possesses historic interest and shows much antiquarian research.
The family bearing the name of Mitchell is one of the oldest in the New World, its progenitor being Experience Mitchell, who came over in 1623 in the “Ann,” and from that time to the present the records of various towns of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, chiefly Plymouth, Duxbury and the Bridgewaters, bear mute testimony of the prominence in peace and war of the members of the family in the different generations, and the present head of the family in Brockton, Isam Mitchell, president of Isam Mitchell & Co., lumber dealers and contractors, and his son, the late Herbert Isam Mitchell, active in business with his father and prominent in fraternal circles, have proved themselves firm in purpose and able in business.
Lysander Franklin Gurney, late of Brockton, Plymouth Co., Mass., was a descendant of some of the earliest settlers of this section. Going back to the mother country, we find the following general information in “The Gurneys of Earlham” (two volumes, Hart, Mich., March 16, 1906).
WILLIAM P. WHITMAN, president and treasurer of the well-known shoe manufacturing concern of the Whitman & Keith Company, of Brockton, and one of that city’s successful and progressive business men, as was his father before him, is a descendant of distinguished and historic New England ancestry. Mr. Whitman is a direct descendant of John Alden and Priscilla Mullins, of the “Mayflower,” 1620; of Rev. James Keith, the first ordained minister of Bridgewater; and of John Whitman, who settled in Weymouth, Mass., as early as 1638, from whom descended many persons eminent in professional life and otherwise, among them Dr. Marcus Whitman, who saved the vast territory of Oregon to the United States; Hon. Ezekiel Whitman, for many years chief justice of the Superior and Supreme courts of the State of Maine; and Hon. William E. Russell, twice governor of Massachusetts.
For an hundred years and more the Swift family in and about New Bedford has been one of prominence, wealthy and influential not only in their several local communities but out through the Commonwealth and into the nation, where their extensive enterprises have extended. These Acushnet-New Bedford Swifts, a branch of the Cape Cod family, brought to their new field of effort that activity, industry, ability and honesty that had for generations characterized their forefathers and also the line of business that had enriched earlier generations in the old home section – the dealing in live oak timber and its manufacture into water craft, in shipbuilding for not only the United States government, but for those across the water. Reference is here made especially to some of the sons, grandsons and great-grandsons of William Swift, of the town of Falmouth, this Commonwealth, among whose sons were Hon. Elijah, Thomas, William, John and Reuben E.; and among the sons of the latter Rodolphus Nye and William Cole Nye Swift, who with their sons together and in turn figured most prominently in and about New Bedford and abroad, as intimated; and some of their sons are yet active here and in the Massachusetts metropolis.
The Washburn name in this country is a distinguished one. Perhaps it is as yet only a tradition that John Washburn, the ancestor of the Washburns here considered, was he who first served as secretary of the Massachusetts Bay Colony. Several governors of our States have borne the Washburn name and at one and the same time four of the name occupied seats in the United States Congress. And the branch of the Massachusetts Washburns seated in Middleboro and vicinity have borne no small part in the annals of the Old Colony and later Commonwealth. Capt. Amos Washburn was in command of a company in the American Revolution; one of his sons, a graduate of Harvard, was a talented lawyer at Middleboro; Edward Washburn, brother of Capt. Amos, was another patriot in the Continental army; and his son, Gen. Abiel Washburn, was one of the leading men of his time in Middleboro, the acknowledged leader of the Federal party, and for thirty-six years held commissions through the different grades of office in the State militia; while Luther, Cyrus and the late Bradford Sumner Washburn, in turn, were substantial citizens of the town, and the latter’s son, Judge Nathan Washburn, lawyer and present Justice of the Courts of Plymouth county, is giving a good account of himself.
COUCH (Taunton family). The family bearing this name at Taunton whose representative head is now Leonard Crocker Couch, Esq., who since boyhood has been a resident of the city, occupied in mechanical and business lines, and for years one of the substantial men and useful citizens of the community, is one of long and honorable standing in the neighboring State of Connecticut and of distinction in our country. And through its Taunton alliance of a generation ago – that of Maj. Gen. Darius Nash Couch, of Civil war fame, the father of the present Leonard Crocker Couch just alluded to
Abbreviations Used in this Directory a–Acres; Ch — Children; O–Owner; T–Tenant or Renter; R –Rural Route; Sec-Section; Maiden name of wife follows directory name in parentheses (); figures at end of information–year became resident of county. Star (*) indicates children not at home. Name of farm follows names of children in quotations marks. In case of a tenant, the farm owner’s name follows the figures giving size of farm. Example: ABBEY, William L. (Lena Riggs) Martha and Cora Abbey, Mother and Sister; Kirkwood R1 Tompking Sec8-5 T80a H.M. Abbey Est. (1886) Tel. Farmers’ Line Kirkwood MEANS ABBEY, William L. –
These biographies are of men prominent in the building of western Nebraska. These men settled in Cheyenne, Box Butte, Deuel, Garden, Sioux, Kimball, Morrill, Sheridan, Scotts Bluff, Banner, and Dawes counties. A group of counties often called the panhandle of Nebraska. The History Of Western Nebraska & It’s People is a trustworthy history of the days of exploration and discovery, of the pioneer sacrifices and settlements, of the life and organization of the territory of Nebraska, of the first fifty years of statehood and progress, and of the place Nebraska holds in the scale of character and civilization. In the