Thomas Mayhew, Jr. Rev. (c.1620 - 1657) MP

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Birthplace: England, United Kingdom
Death: Died
Cause of death: lost at sea
Managed by: Diego Valle Jones
Last Updated:

About Thomas Mayhew, Jr. Rev.

Additional information-proofs-citations added by E.C. Nickerson about this Ancestor: First Minister to the Native People in America. ::: Came to New England in 1630 in Governor Winthrop's Fleet with his father; he was 10 yrs. old at the time. His father obtained the first land grant at Martha's Vineyard.. He resided in Medford and Watertown until his removal to Martha's Vineyard in 1642. He was a "famous Indian missionary"*, who was instrumental in educating the Indian people on the island and converting them to Christianity.

He married Jane Paine*, the daughter of his stepmother. . His father, Governor Thomas Mayhew, had married the widow of Thomas Paine, a London merchant, while on a trip to London and brought his wife and new stepdaughter to live with the family. Young Thomas married her about 1647.

  • [this statement comes from Banks "History of Martha's Vineyard". The genealogist/historian on the island believes that there is NO evidence whatsoever that Jane's maiden name was Paine. She refers to her only as 'Jane']

Thomas Jr. was well educated and proficient in Latin and Greek, and also knew a small amount of Hebrew, according to C.E. Banks, in his History of the Vineyard, p. 127. By chance he was exposed to the many Indians of the area and began a ministry to them that lasted 14 years until he was lost at sea in 1657. There is a lengthy description of his life and works in the book "History of Martha's Vineyard, Vol. 1", pp. 213-232.

The following is an excerpt from the book:

....."It (the trip) was delayed a year, but after the annual meeting of the commissioners this year (1657), he was allowed to go. His intention was, naturally, to combine this personal business with his own public labors, and he arranged his plans so as to "give a more particular account of the state of the Indians than he could do well by the Letters, and to pursue the most proper measures for the further advancement of the Religion among them." To add a touch of realism to this part of his journey, he decided to take with him one of the converts,as a living evidence of the power of the Gospel of Christ. He chose a son of Miohqsoo, who was a preacher, and had been brought up by him in his own house. His intended departure with this young native caused the greatest and excitement among the people of his flock. His own projected absence was mourned in advance. It was said of them "that they could not easily bear his absence so far as Boston, before they longed for his return." He arranged a farewell meeting of his faithful followers, and the legend is that he went to the most distant assembly of them, probably in Taskemmy or Nashowakemmuck, where he held a service of worship and song, accompanied with a parting injunction to them to be steadfast in his absence. his journey towards the east end of the island became almost a triumphal procession. they refused to consider this a farewell, and followed him homewards till he came to a spot on the "Old Mill Path" , since known in song and story as the "Place by the Way-side," where by this time had gathered hundreds of others in anticipation of his return to meet with them. Here a great combined service was held, and the simple children of this flock heard their beloved shepherd give a blessing to them and say the last sad farewells to them individually and as a congregation. It was a solemn occasion, long held in memory by all who participated. He made his departure from Boston in the month of November, with his two companions, says Gookin, "in the best of two ships then bound for London, whereof one James Garrett was master." ..."Mr. Garrett's ship which was about four hundred tons had good accommodations greater far than the other: and shee had aboard her a very rich lading of goods, but most especially of passengers, about fifty in number; whereof divers of them were persons of great worth and virtue, both men and women; especialy Mr. Mayhew, Mr. Davis, Mr. Ince, and Mr. Pelham, all scholars and masters of arts. When the ship cleared the white receding shores of Cape Cod in her outward voyage, and headed for the green pastures of Old England, it was the last seen of this fine vessel and her distinguished passengers. It was never known what disaster overtook her."

Old Governor Mayhew still hoped for the return of his son for over a year, in the hope that he might have been captured by Spanish or Algerian pirates, but it was not to be. This young Christian Warrior was to be the first of hundreds of Vineyard men to perish at sea.

"The Place on the Way-Side," mentioned as the spot where he "solemnly and affectionately took his leave of that poor and beloved people of his," became in the minds of the Indians a sort of hallowed spot. It is part of the legendary lore of this spot, that no Indian passed by it without casting a stone into a heap, that by their custom had thus grown like a Cairn, in remembrance of him, to be a great monument to this sad event in their lives. It is one of the historic places on the island which has suitably been made a permanent memorial by the Martha's Vineyard Chapter, DAR, of Edgartown, who on 7-27-1901, dedicated a bronze tablet, set in a large boulder, placed on top of the stone pile above referred to. The boulder was brought from Gay Head, by descendants of the "poor and beloved "natives who raised the foundations when passing by in generations since gone. The tablet bears the following inscription:

THIS ROCK MARKS THE "PLACE ON THE WAYSIDE" WHERE THE REV. THOMAS MAYHEW JR., SON OF GOV. MAYHEW, FIRST PASTOR OF THE CHURCH OF CHRIST ON MARTHA'S VINEYARD, AND THE FIRST MISSIONARY TO THE INDIANS OF NEW ENGLAND, SOLEMNLY AND AFFECTIONATELY TOOK LEAVE OF THE INDIANS, WHO, IN LARGE NUMBERS, HAD FOLLOWED HIM DOWN FROM THE WESTERN PART OF THE ISLAND, BEING HIS LAST WORSHIP AND INTERVIEW WITH THEM BEFORE EMBARKING FOR ENGLAND IN 1657, FROM WHENCE HE NEVER RETURNED. NO TIDINGS EVER COMING FROM THE SHIP OR ITS PASSENGERS. IN LOVING RMEMBRANCE OF HIM THOSE INDIANS RAISED THIS PILE OF STONES, 1657-1901. ERECTED BY THE MARTHA'S VINEYARD CHAPTER, DAUGHTERS OF THE AMERICAN REVOLUTION. THIS LAND GIVEN FOR THIS PURPOSE BY CAPTAIN BENJAMIN COFFIN CROMWELL, OF TISBURY; THE BOULDER FROM GAY HEAD, A GIFT FROM THE NOW RESIDENT INDIANS. TABLET PURCHASED WITH CONTRIBUTIONS FROM MAYHEW'S DESCENDANTS.

From: Charles Edward Banks, "The History of Martha's Vineyard", Vol. 1, 227-230. Published Boston, 1911 **/ECN/** also Banks: "The Winthrop Fleet, 1630" Thomas Mayhew, Jr, born in 1620 or 1621 in Southampton, co. Hampshire, England. He died February 2, 1688, in Edgartown, Dukes County, MA. According to one report, he died while on board a ship called "The Garrett", and was lost at sea. According to Torrey, he died in 1657. See below for Akers account of his death. He was the first missionary bishop of Martha's Vineyard. After his death his father became the second missionary bishop. He came to America in 1631 according to Who Was. He was the Governor, as was his father was after his death, of Martha's Vineyard, Nantucket, and Elizabeth Islands and a missionary to those regions. He was the pastor of the Edgartown Church. He converted the Indians of the islands to Christianity, opening and Indian school in 1652. According to Who Was, he died at sea in 1657.

According to Charles W. Akers, "Called Unto Liberty, A Life of Jonathan Mayhew, " written in 1964, the definitive work on the life of Jonathan Mayhew:

1902. Rev. Thomas MAYHEW Jr.(755) (756)(753) (954) was christened about 1618.(753) He was born in 1621 in Southampton, England. This date and place from Conover. McCoy has birth year of 1620/162l atTisbury, Wilshire, England; McKay has birth year of "abt 1618;" Bonnie Cushman has "about 1921" in one place and "1920-1" in another. He died in Nov 1657 in at sea. IMMIGRANT All the known details of his life are related in volume 1, PP.127-30 et seq. Married his step-mother's daughter. Born in England, where is not known, and travelled with his father to Massachusetts Bay Colony in about 1631 where his father was an agent for a wealthy trader. The wealthy trader had a big brick house in Medford?, Massachusetts, which the Mayhews inhabited, so they lived in high style. His father remarried when he was about fifteen and his new step-mother brought a daughter and a son into the house from her former marriage. The daughter was then about five or six, and would become Thomas's wife in about 1647. Savage says, he served with his father at the Vineyard being the first minister there before removing to Nantucket. He was on board of that ship of which Garrett was master, from Boston to London, in Nov. 1657, with Davis, Ince, Pelham, young scholars, the hope of the country, fellow passengers never heard of, so properly lamented by Gookin, as in his Hist. Coll. may be read. He sailed from Boston the same day in another ship for London. (McKay) Occupation: Minister. Came to America in 1631. Rev. Thomas Mayhew set sail for England, with his brother-in-law Thomas Paine, in November 1657. The ship was never heard from again. (McCoy) (Note that Thomas Paine would also have been his step-brother.) "Thomas2 was among the first settlers to the Vinyard in 1642, while his father stayed at Watertown a few more years. ... Thomas2 was an unusual person. He had no doubt assisted his father in business affairs, but since he showed a special gift for languages, he was given special tutoring in Latin, Greek and even Hebrew. He was the only Mayhew son other than his ten-year-old stepbrother and he represented his father on Martha's Vineyard, acting as the local governor until the elder Mayhew finally came there to live permanently in 1646. Though he was scarcely of age when he went to the island, Thomas2 led the small band of colonists spiritually as well as secularly. The Dictionary of American Biography calls him a Congregational clergyman. He also gave his time to the Indians and learned their language. ... His style was not so much like "preaching" as it was telling the stories of the Bible in their own language and discussing with the Indians the principles found in these stories. In 1652 he started a school to teach the Indian children to read [the first teacher hired was Peter Folger, later to be the grandfather of Benjamin Franklin]. Thomas2 was a very sincere and humble person and paid the expenses of his mission out of his own pocket." His wife apparently had some problems with her inheritance from her English father. "... it was to clear these up that Thomas2 Paine and Thomas2 Mayhew sailed for England in November 1657. In addition to seeing to his wife's inheritance, young Mayhew hoped to stimulate interest in his missionary work and so took along the first Indian graduate of Harvard as well. ... Mayhew walked across the island from Gay Head toward Edgartown, saying goodby to his Indian friends. By the time he reached the spot now known as 'The Place on the Wayside,' where many more waited for him, the procession had grown to triumphal proportions. A final service was held and at the end, so the story goes, the Indians placed white stones where Mayhew stood. ... In 1901 a monument to Thomas Mayhew, Jr., was dedicated at 'The Place on the Wayside,' a boulder given by the Indians of Gay Head with a bronze tablet contributed by Mayhew descendants." (Hubbard)

He was married to Jane PAINE in 1647. (Note: This was a marriage between step-siblings.)

1903. Jane PAINE (756)(753) (955) was born about 1625 in London, England.(81) Bonnie Hubbard's narrative give birth year as "about 1628 or 9" while her pedigree chart indicates "about 1625." IMMIGRANT After first husband Thomas' death, married (2) Richard Sarson about 1667 in Edgartown, MA. She and Richard had two children, Samuel and Mehitabel. (McCoy)

Children were:

i. Mathew MAYHEW(753) (756)(755) was born in 1648 in Edgartown, Martha's Vineyard, Dukes Co., MA. He died on 19 May 1710 in Edgartown, Martha's Vineyard, Dukes Co., MA. For details of this well known member of the family, reference may be made to Vol II, Pp. 79-84. Annals of Edgartown. He died May 19, 1710 and administraton of his estate was granted on August 24, 1710. Savage says a teacher of much celebrity in the Indian cause. (McKay) He married Mary Skiffe on 1 Mar 1674 at Chilmark, Dukes Co (or Sandwich ?, Cape Cod), MA. They had 5 children. (McCoy) 

Mary Skiffe's father, James Skiffe, "first appeared in New England at Lynn, Mass., about 1635 and is said to have come from London. He had some association with Isaac Allerton of Plymouth who came from London and was a passenger on the Mayflower, 1620, and 'for his service Donn to Me Isaack Ollerton' he was granted land in Sandwich Jan. 14, 1636/7, which place became his permanent residence. He was representative to the General Court, beginning in 1645, for thirteen years, and in 1656 was appointed to train the militia, and in various ways was a leader in the public life in Sandwich." (McKay)

ii. child MAYHEW(753) (756) was born in 1649. Died young. 
iii. Thomas MAYHEW the 3rd(753) (755) was born in 1650 in Edgartown, Martha's Vineyard, Dukes Co., MA. He died on 21 Jul 1715 in Chilmark, Martha's Vineyard, MA. The second son of Rev. Thomas Mayhew, Jr., born in 1650 chose Chilmark as his home, although he resided for a while in Tisbury, where from 1674 to 1679 he was the town clerk. In 1680 he purchased sixty acres of land in the new settlement at Chilmark, and thenceforth spent his life here as a resident. His birth gave him prominence through family influences and during all of his adult life he was an office holder. He was an associate justice of the King's Bench from 1692 to 1699 and chief justice 1699 to 1713 of the same court. The nephew, Rev. Experience, left this brief notice of his uncle: He was long impowered in the Government of the Indians there, and was both singularly spirited & accomplished for that service: as he was on divers other accounts a very excellent Person. He married Sarah Skiffe (5) who was born October 12, 1646 and survived her husband until Dec. 30, 1740 when she passed away in the 95th year of her age. (McKay) Conover has Rev. Thomas married to Zacheus in 1675 in MA. 
iv. Rev John MAYHEW(753) (755) was born in 1652 in Edgartown, Martha's Vineyard, Dukes Co., MA. He died on 3 Feb 1688/89 in Chilmark, Martha's Vineyard, MA. According to Savage, labored all his short life in teaching the Indians chiefly on the Vineyard. The Rev. Thomas Prince, the New England chronologist, is our authority for the statement that the Rev. John Mayhew, the youngest son of the ill fated missionary was called to preach in Tisbury as soon as he had reached his majority. This was in 1673, when this young man, who more than any of his kindred resembled his gifted father, is described as "of great worth and usefulness and fell not short either of the eminent genius or piety of his excellent progenitors." He had these inherited scholarly inclinations, which were early developed by the aid of his grandfather's teaching and the benefit of his father's library. As his older brothers, Matthew and Thomas, applied themselves to executive and judicial duties, the way was cleared for him as one of the co-heirs of the proprietary, to devote himself to the work of his choice. He began his ministry coincident with the establishment of marital relations. He was married in 1672 to Elizabeth Hilyard (or Hilliard), orphan daughter of Emmanuel Hilyard of Hampton, N.H., who at the time of her marriage was little more than seventeen years of age. She was brought to Tisbury by her mother, who had become, after the death of her husband, the second wife of Joseph Merry. With his young bride, he set up a home for himself at Quansoo, where he ever after lived, raised a family of eight children, the eldest of whom was the celebrated Experience, and there ended his days. It appears that he was "mininster of the Gospel to the inhabitants of Tisbury and Chilmark united," as testified by the epitaph on his gravestone, and it can be readily understood that such and arrangement for a joint pastorate would have been the antural plan for the two small communities lying contiguous... There are no church records extant covering John Mayhew's ministry and our only knowledge of his work, which continued until his death on Feb. 22, 1668/9, a period of sixteen years, is to be found in scattered contemporarly documents, from which this slender thread of facts enables us to weave an equally slender narrative of a long pastorate... He left eight children, the eldest of which was but sixteen Years of Age, and soon succeeded him in the Indian Service. (McKay) 
v. Jerusha MAYHEW(753) was born about 1654. 

951 vi. Jedidah MAYHEW.

1902. Rev. Thomas MAYHEW Jr.(755) (756)(753) (954) was christened about 1618.(753) He was born in 1621 in Southampton, England. This date and place from Conover. McCoy has birth year of 1620/162l atTisbury, Wilshire, England; McKay has birth year of "abt 1618;" Bonnie Cushman has "about 1921" in one place and "1920-1" in another. He died in Nov 1657 in at sea. IMMIGRANT All the known details of his life are related in volume 1, PP.127-30 et seq. Married his step-mother's daughter. Born in England, where is not known, and travelled with his father to Massachusetts Bay Colony in about 1631 where his father was an agent for a wealthy trader. The wealthy trader had a big brick house in Medford?, Massachusetts, which the Mayhews inhabited, so they lived in high style. His father remarried when he was about fifteen and his new step-mother brought a daughter and a son into the house from her former marriage. The daughter was then about five or six, and would become Thomas's wife in about 1647. Savage says, he served with his father at the Vineyard being the first minister there before removing to Nantucket. He was on board of that ship of which Garrett was master, from Boston to London, in Nov. 1657, with Davis, Ince, Pelham, young scholars, the hope of the country, fellow passengers never heard of, so properly lamented by Gookin, as in his Hist. Coll. may be read. He sailed from Boston the same day in another ship for London. (McKay) Occupation: Minister. Came to America in 1631. Rev. Thomas Mayhew set sail for England, with his brother-in-law Thomas Paine, in November 1657. The ship was never heard from again. (McCoy) (Note that Thomas Paine would also have been his step-brother.) "Thomas2 was among the first settlers to the Vinyard in 1642, while his father stayed at Watertown a few more years. ... Thomas2 was an unusual person. He had no doubt assisted his father in business affairs, but since he showed a special gift for languages, he was given special tutoring in Latin, Greek and even Hebrew. He was the only Mayhew son other than his ten-year-old stepbrother and he represented his father on Martha's Vineyard, acting as the local governor until the elder Mayhew finally came there to live permanently in 1646. Though he was scarcely of age when he went to the island, Thomas2 led the small band of colonists spiritually as well as secularly. The Dictionary of American Biography calls him a Congregational clergyman. He also gave his time to the Indians and learned their language. ... His style was not so much like "preaching" as it was telling the stories of the Bible in their own language and discussing with the Indians the principles found in these stories. In 1652 he started a school to teach the Indian children to read [the first teacher hired was Peter Folger, later to be the grandfather of Benjamin Franklin]. Thomas2 was a very sincere and humble person and paid the expenses of his mission out of his own pocket." His wife apparently had some problems with her inheritance from her English father. "... it was to clear these up that Thomas2 Paine and Thomas2 Mayhew sailed for England in November 1657. In addition to seeing to his wife's inheritance, young Mayhew hoped to stimulate interest in his missionary work and so took along the first Indian graduate of Harvard as well. ... Mayhew walked across the island from Gay Head toward Edgartown, saying goodby to his Indian friends. By the time he reached the spot now known as 'The Place on the Wayside,' where many more waited for him, the procession had grown to triumphal proportions. A final service was held and at the end, so the story goes, the Indians placed white stones where Mayhew stood. ... In 1901 a monument to Thomas Mayhew, Jr., was dedicated at 'The Place on the Wayside,' a boulder given by the Indians of Gay Head with a bronze tablet contributed by Mayhew descendants." (Hubbard)

He was married to Jane PAINE in 1647. (Note: This was a marriage between step-siblings.)

1903. Jane PAINE (756)(753) (955) was born about 1625 in London, England.(81) Bonnie Hubbard's narrative give birth year as "about 1628 or 9" while her pedigree chart indicates "about 1625." IMMIGRANT After first husband Thomas' death, married (2) Richard Sarson about 1667 in Edgartown, MA. She and Richard had two children, Samuel and Mehitabel. (McCoy)

Children were:

i. Mathew MAYHEW(753) (756)(755) was born in 1648 in Edgartown, Martha's Vineyard, Dukes Co., MA. He died on 19 May 1710 in Edgartown, Martha's Vineyard, Dukes Co., MA. For details of this well known member of the family, reference may be made to Vol II, Pp. 79-84. Annals of Edgartown. He died May 19, 1710 and administraton of his estate was granted on August 24, 1710. Savage says a teacher of much celebrity in the Indian cause. (McKay) He married Mary Skiffe on 1 Mar 1674 at Chilmark, Dukes Co (or Sandwich ?, Cape Cod), MA. They had 5 children. (McCoy) 

Mary Skiffe's father, James Skiffe, "first appeared in New England at Lynn, Mass., about 1635 and is said to have come from London. He had some association with Isaac Allerton of Plymouth who came from London and was a passenger on the Mayflower, 1620, and 'for his service Donn to Me Isaack Ollerton' he was granted land in Sandwich Jan. 14, 1636/7, which place became his permanent residence. He was representative to the General Court, beginning in 1645, for thirteen years, and in 1656 was appointed to train the militia, and in various ways was a leader in the public life in Sandwich." (McKay)

ii. child MAYHEW(753) (756) was born in 1649. Died young. 
iii. Thomas MAYHEW the 3rd(753) (755) was born in 1650 in Edgartown, Martha's Vineyard, Dukes Co., MA. He died on 21 Jul 1715 in Chilmark, Martha's Vineyard, MA. The second son of Rev. Thomas Mayhew, Jr., born in 1650 chose Chilmark as his home, although he resided for a while in Tisbury, where from 1674 to 1679 he was the town clerk. In 1680 he purchased sixty acres of land in the new settlement at Chilmark, and thenceforth spent his life here as a resident. His birth gave him prominence through family influences and during all of his adult life he was an office holder. He was an associate justice of the King's Bench from 1692 to 1699 and chief justice 1699 to 1713 of the same court. The nephew, Rev. Experience, left this brief notice of his uncle: He was long impowered in the Government of the Indians there, and was both singularly spirited & accomplished for that service: as he was on divers other accounts a very excellent Person. He married Sarah Skiffe (5) who was born October 12, 1646 and survived her husband until Dec. 30, 1740 when she passed away in the 95th year of her age. (McKay) Conover has Rev. Thomas married to Zacheus in 1675 in MA. 
iv. Rev John MAYHEW(753) (755) was born in 1652 in Edgartown, Martha's Vineyard, Dukes Co., MA. He died on 3 Feb 1688/89 in Chilmark, Martha's Vineyard, MA. According to Savage, labored all his short life in teaching the Indians chiefly on the Vineyard. The Rev. Thomas Prince, the New England chronologist, is our authority for the statement that the Rev. John Mayhew, the youngest son of the ill fated missionary was called to preach in Tisbury as soon as he had reached his majority. This was in 1673, when this young man, who more than any of his kindred resembled his gifted father, is described as "of great worth and usefulness and fell not short either of the eminent genius or piety of his excellent progenitors." He had these inherited scholarly inclinations, which were early developed by the aid of his grandfather's teaching and the benefit of his father's library. As his older brothers, Matthew and Thomas, applied themselves to executive and judicial duties, the way was cleared for him as one of the co-heirs of the proprietary, to devote himself to the work of his choice. He began his ministry coincident with the establishment of marital relations. He was married in 1672 to Elizabeth Hilyard (or Hilliard), orphan daughter of Emmanuel Hilyard of Hampton, N.H., who at the time of her marriage was little more than seventeen years of age. She was brought to Tisbury by her mother, who had become, after the death of her husband, the second wife of Joseph Merry. With his young bride, he set up a home for himself at Quansoo, where he ever after lived, raised a family of eight children, the eldest of whom was the celebrated Experience, and there ended his days. It appears that he was "mininster of the Gospel to the inhabitants of Tisbury and Chilmark united," as testified by the epitaph on his gravestone, and it can be readily understood that such and arrangement for a joint pastorate would have been the antural plan for the two small communities lying contiguous... There are no church records extant covering John Mayhew's ministry and our only knowledge of his work, which continued until his death on Feb. 22, 1668/9, a period of sixteen years, is to be found in scattered contemporarly documents, from which this slender thread of facts enables us to weave an equally slender narrative of a long pastorate... He left eight children, the eldest of which was but sixteen Years of Age, and soon succeeded him in the Indian Service. (McKay) 
v. Jerusha MAYHEW(753) was born about 1654. 

951 vi. Jedidah MAYHEW.

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was christened about 1618.(753) He was born in 1621 in Southampton, England. This date and place from Conover. McCoy has birth year of 1620/162l atTisbury, Wilshire, England; McKay has birth year of "abt 1618;" Bonnie Cushman has "about 1921" in one place and "1920-1" in another. He died in Nov 1657 in at sea. IMMIGRANT All the known details of his life are related in volume 1, PP.127-30 et seq. Married his step-mother's daughter. Born in England, where is not known, and travelled with his father to Massachusetts Bay Colony in about 1631 where his father was an agent for a wealthy trader. The wealthy trader had a big brick house in Medford?, Massachusetts, which the Mayhews inhabited, so they lived in high style. His father remarried when he was about fifteen and his new step-mother brought a daughter and a son into the house from her former marriage. The daughter was then about five or six, and would become Thomas's wife in about 1647. Savage says, he served with his father at the Vineyard being the first minister there before removing to Nantucket. He was on board of that ship of which Garrett was master, from Boston to London, in Nov. 1657, with Davis, Ince, Pelham, young scholars, the hope of the country, fellow passengers never heard of, so properly lamented by Gookin, as in his Hist. Coll. may be read. He sailed from Boston the same day in another ship for London. (McKay)

Occupation: Minister. Came to America in 1631. Rev. Thomas Mayhew set sail for England, with his brother-in-law Thomas Paine, in November 1657. The ship was never heard from again. (McCoy) (Note that Thomas Paine would also have been his step-brother.)

"Thomas2 was among the first settlers to the Vinyard in 1642, while his father stayed at Watertown a few more years. ... Thomas2 was an unusual person. He had no doubt assisted his father in business affairs, but since he showed a special gift for languages, he was given special tutoring in Latin, Greek and even Hebrew. He was the only Mayhew son other than his ten-year-old stepbrother and he represented his father on Martha's Vineyard, acting as the local governor until the elder Mayhew finally came there to live permanently in 1646. Though he was scarcely of age when he went to the island, Thomas2 led the small band of colonists spiritually as well as secularly. The Dictionary of American Biography calls him a Congregational clergyman. He also gave his time to the Indians and learned their language. ... His style was not so much like "preaching" as it was telling the stories of the Bible in their own language and discussing with the Indians the principles found in these stories. In 1652 he started a school to teach the Indian children to read [the first teacher hired was Peter Folger, later to be the grandfather of Benjamin Franklin]. Thomas2 was a very sincere and humble person and paid the expenses of his mission out of his own pocket." His wife apparently had some problems with her inheritance from her English father. "... it was to clear these up that Thomas2 Paine and Thomas2 Mayhew sailed for England in November 1657. In addition to seeing to his wife's inheritance, young Mayhew hoped to stimulate interest in his missionary work and so took along the first Indian graduate of Harvard as well. ... Mayhew walked across the island from Gay Head toward Edgartown, saying goodby to his Indian friends. By the time he reached the spot now known as 'The Place on the Wayside,' where many more waited for him, the procession had grown to triumphal proportions. A final service was held and at the end, so the story goes, the Indians placed white stones where Mayhew stood. ... In 1901 a monument to Thomas Mayhew, Jr., was dedicated at 'The Place on the Wayside,' a boulder given by the Indians of Gay Head with a bronze tablet contributed by Mayhew descendants." (Hubbard)

He was married to Jane PAINE in 1647. (Note: This was a marriage between step-siblings.)

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http://history.vineyard.net/mayhew.htm

THOMAS MAYHEW , (Thomas,5 Matthew4), b. 1620­1 in England; came to N. E. in 1631 and res. at Medford and Watertown until his removal to the Vineyard in 1642. All the known details of his life have been related in previous volumes (I, pp. 127­30 et. seq.) and nothing further has since been discovered. He m. JANE, dau. of Thomas and Jane (Gallion?) PAINE, his step­mother's daughter, who was b. abt. 1625. He d. at sea in 1657 as previously related and his wid. m. (2) RICHARD SARSON.

30. MATTHEW, b. 1648.

31. THOMAS, b. 1650.

32. JOHN, b. 1652.

33. JERUSHA, b. (1664); m. (I) Joseph WING 12 Apr. 1682; (2) THOMAS EATON of Shrewsbury, N. J.

34. JEDIDAH, b. (1656); m. BENJAMIN SMITH (318). [She is buried at Tower Hill Cemetery.]

35. (_____)* b. (_____), d.y. [*The name of Abiah is given to this child in family records. Gov. Mayhew in a letter in 1658 refers to "my daughter and her six children."]

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Rev. Thomas Mayhew, lost on a voyage to England. There is a memorial to him in Martha's Vineyard. He was well educated in Latin and Greek and not wholly a stranger to Hebrew. He was 15 years old when on the Vineyard and made local Gov. 1642. He married Jane Paine, daughter of his stepmother and Thomas Paine.

view all 23

Rev. Thomas Mayhew's Timeline

1620
1620
England, United Kingdom
1630
1630
Age 10
Winthrop Fleet, First Settlers of the Massachusetts Bay Colony
1630
Age 10
Winthrop Fleet, First Settlers of the Massachusetts Bay Colony
1631
1631
Age 11
1631
- 1642
Age 11
1631
- 1642
Age 11
1641
1641
Age 21
1641
Age 21
Martha's Vineyard, Dukes, MA
1644
1644
Age 24
Marthas Vineyard, Dukes Co., Ma
1648
1648
Age 28
Martha's Vin., Dukes, Mass.