Francis Nurse, Sr.

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Francis Nurse, Sr.

Also Known As: "Francis Nourse"
Birthdate:
Birthplace: Great Yarmouth, Norfolk, England
Death: Died in Salem Village, Essex County, Province of Massachusetts Bay
Place of Burial: Nurse Family Burying Ground, Danvers, Essex County, Massachusetts, United States
Immediate Family:

Son of Rev. Edward Norris II and Elinor Norris
Husband of Rebecca Nurse
Father of John Nurse, Sr.; Rebecca Preston; Sarah Bowden; Samuel Nurse; Nathaniel Michael Nurse and 5 others
Brother of John Norris and Robert Nurse

Occupation: Tray Maker & other wooden household goods, tray maker
Managed by: Amy Campbell Moran
Last Updated:

About Francis Nurse, Sr.

Francis Nourse

  • Birth: Jan 18 1618 - Great Yarmouth, Norfolk, England
  • Death: Nov 22 1695
  • Parents: Edward Norris, Elinor Norris

From "Salem Witchcraft" Volume 1 by Charles W. Upham:

http://www.gutenberg.org/files/17845/17845-h/salem1-htm.html

Nothing, or scarcely any thing, can be inferred from spelling. It was wholly unsettled among the best-educated men, and in the practice of the same person... The name of the Nurses was often written Nourse, and sometimes Nurs.

...

The terms "Goodman" and "Goodwife" were applied to the heads of families. The latter word was abbreviated to "Goody," but not at all, as our dictionaries have it, as a "low term of civility." It was applied to the most honored matrons... It was a term of respect; conveying, perhaps, an affectionate sentiment, but not in the slightest degree disrespectful, derogatory, or belittling.

Surely no better terms were ever used to characterize a worthy person. "Goodman" comprehends all that can be ascribed to a citizen of mature years in the way of commendation; and the whole catalogue of pretentious titles ever given by flatterers or courtiers to a married lady cannot, all combined, convey a higher encomium than the term "Goodwife."

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Please refer to the timeline tab for events in Francis Nurse's life.

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Francis Nurse, Sr.'s Timeline

1618
January 18, 1618
Great Yarmouth, Norfolk, England
1618
Great Yarmouth, Norfolk, England

There are numerous references to Francis Nurse's date of birth/baptism. The one that seemed to refer to a citation indicated January 18, 1617/18:
http://familytreemaker.genealogy.com/users/q/u/e/Debby-L-Queripel/G...

371. WFT Volume 12, Tree 0093, "CD-ROM."
372. WFT Volume 01, Tree 4470, "CD-ROM."

Granted, these are not the most reliable of citations, but the search does continue for better sources on birth or baptismal date.

1640
March 31, 1640
Age 22
Town of Salem, Essex County, Massachusetts Bay Colony, (Present USA)

Francis Nurse first noted in the Town of Salem from a court record (that had apparently been later crossed out) describing Francis as a "youth" (possibly an indentured servant), according to S.J. Walker:
http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~walkersj/Nurse.htm

"Francis Nurse a youth (charged) for stealing of victualls and for suspicion of breaking (into) a house."
(Records & Files of Quarterly Courts of Essex County 1:16)

1640
- 1640
Age 22
Salem, Essex, MA, USA
1642
December 1642
Age 24
Town of Salem, Essex County, Massachusetts Bay Colony, (Present USA)

According to S.J. Walker's information on the Nurse family:
http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~walkersj/Nurse.htm

(Francis Nurse) involved in suit against Emanuel Downing for "defamation".
(Currents of Malice - McMillen)

1644
August 24, 1644
Age 26
Town of Salem, Essex County, Massachusetts Bay Colony, (Present USA)

The couple married at the First Church of the Town of Salem on Sunday, August 24. Francis Nurse, a former indentured servant who after some struggles became a tray maker (a rather well-paying trade in colonial Massachusetts) had a place of his own already for the past six years on present Skerry Street ("not far from where the bridge now crosses to Beverley"), and so likely the couple moved straight into the home; they will continue to live there the next 34 years.

From the Familypedia page on Rebecca Towne:
http://familypedia.wikia.com/wiki/Rebecca_Towne_(1621-1692)

Her husband was a "tray maker" by trade, who likely made many other wooden household items. Due to the rarity of such household goods, artisans of that medium were considered esteemed.

In the following year, their first child, John, would be born.

1645
1645
Age 27
Town of Salem, Essex County, Massachusetts Bay Colony

The exact date of birth of eldest child John Nurse to father Francis and mother Rebecca Nurse is unrecorded, as is the date of baptism.

1647
1647
Age 29
Town of Salem, Essex County, Massachusetts Bay Colony, (Present USA)

The exact date of birth of eldest daughter Rebecca Nurse (future Rebecca Preston) to father Francis and mother Rebecca Nurse is unrecorded, as is the date of baptism. The infant has an older brother, a toddler named John (age 2).

1648
February 1648
Age 30
Town of Salem, Essex County, Massachusetts Bay Colony, (Present USA)

Along with Thomas Odingsells, Francis Nurse is ordered to pay a fine or sit in stocks for defaming Daniel Rea, according to "Currents of Malice" by McMillen:
http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~walkersj/Nurse.htm

1648
Age 30
Town of Salem, Essex County, Massachusetts Bay Colony, (Present USA)

The exact date of birth of Sarah Nurse (future Sarah Bowden) to father Francis and mother Rebecca Nurse is unrecorded, as is the date of baptism. The infant has two older brothers (a young boy named John - age 6, and a toddler named Samuel - age 2) and an older sister (a young girl named Rebecca, age 4).