William Phelps (1590-1672) of CT family

Started by Erica Howton on Saturday, October 16, 2010
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10/16/2010 at 7:16 PM

Can descendants help me make sure this family tree is correct and merged out? Marvin Caulk I mean you too :)

10/16/2010 at 7:53 PM

Aww Marvin,

I was asking your help. It looked like you know the family. I wanted to make sure I do the mega merging and have the relationships correct -- then it should flow through merge center in the usual way. Does that sound good?

10/16/2010 at 7:54 PM

I thought I had the profile tagged correctly for the discussion. My apologies if I didn't do it right to make it easy for you. That's all I really want - to get the dups merged together and the family tree accurate.

10/16/2010 at 9:29 PM

Aww? I don't need your pity.

Here's where a prob;em set in. Under William Phelps, of Crewkerne

(This is for the SR)

I put
The following posted by Marvin Caulk Oct 2, 2010

Family Group Sheet for William Phelps and Dorothy James [Phelps]

Husband William Phelps
Birth 1560 Tewkesbury, Gloucestershire, England
Marriage Between 1586 and 1587 England
Death Sep. 28, 1611 County of Gloucestershire, England

Parents James Phelps and Joan Phelps

Wife Dorothy James [Phelps]
Birth Apr. 1, 1562 County of Gloucestershire, England
Death Aug. 28, 1615 Tewkesbury, Gloucestershire, England

Parents Henry James and Bridget Littleton [James]


William Phelps
Gender Male
Birth Feb. 28, 1599 England
Wife Mary Dover [Phelps]
Marriage Between 1637 and 1638 Windsor, Hartford, Connecticut, USA
Death Jul. 14, 1672 Connecticut, USA
Burial Jul. 15, 1672 Windsor, Hartford, Connecticut, USA

Notes on William Phelps

!Marr/1 Elizabeth in England, she died in 1636, Dorchester, Ma, 7 chi. "Search for the Passengers of the Mary & John, 1630", Vol 7 pge 63 to 84.

other info of children

Richard b 26 Dec 1619;
William Jr., abt 1620;
Sarah abt 1623;
Samuel abt 1623;
Nathaniel abt 1627;
Joseph abt 1629; all born Tewkesbury,

Elizabeth died in the spring of 1636, Dorchester, Ma. See Vol 7 p 63.
And then someone comes along and posts under William Phelps, of Windsor, CT

(this is the profile for the JR but the info is about the SR) and reads

"William Phelps was a passenger on the ship "Mary and John" which landed in 1630 in the area of what is now Dorchester, MA and eventually helped to found the town of Windsor CT.
William Phelps Sr. was born say 1593 at Crewkerne, Co. Somerset, England.5 He was the son of William Phelps. William Phelps Sr. married Mary (?) say 1617. William Phelps Sr. married Anne Dover on 14 November 1626 at Crewkerne, Co. Somerset, England. William Phelps Sr. died on 14 July 1672 at Windsor, Hartford Co., CT.6

William was baptized in Tewkesbury Abbey on August 19, 1599, as son of William and Dorothy Phelps. He was twelve and his brother George was only five at the time of their father's death in 1611. Their mother died about two years later. There is no information on these brothers' lives in the next decade. William married about 1618, Mary (earlier texts say Elizabeth, see TAG), who may have been a Marshall. Their first son was baptized in Twekesbury on December 26, 1619.

They may have left then for Exeter, Devon, for Marian Merritt says William Phelps was from the county town of Exeter. When they sailed for American in 1630 they brought their six children. Mr. George E. Phelps lists these as born in Tewkesbury but McBride saw no baptismal records for them there. It is possible they were on some of the ruined sheets and certainly, if born at Exeter, must have been on their lost sheets.

NOTE: Later research, especially by Robert Charles Anderson, finds error with the above assertion that William was from Tewkesbury, but places him from Crewkerne.

William's Wives

Henry R. Stiles in his History and Genealogy of Ancient Windsor, states that William Phelps married first Elizabeth (---), who died in Dorchester, that he married second in Windsor, Mary Dover, and that she died on 27 Nov. 1675, he having predeceased her on 14 July 1672.

These statements are repeated by Phelps Fam. 1:72-86, Maude Pinney Kuhns (The Mary and John, and other works such as Spear (7:63), with the addition of the years 1635 for Elizabeth's death and 1638 for the marriage to Mary Dover. Charles Edward anks, however, gives the name of the wife with whom William Phelps emigrated as "Mrs. Anne Phelps," without, unfortunately, a citation (Planters p. 90).

No evidence has been found in American sources for these assertions. the Dorchester vital records do not include those families that left for Windsor before 1643 and have nothing on the death of any Phelps. Windsor records do not include the claimed marriage to Mary Dover, and we have no evidence of her first name. The death record simply names "William Phelps his wife".

The Crewkerne records prove that William Phelps had an apparent first wife, named Mary rather than Elizabeth, and that after her death he did indeed marry a Dover. The published assertion about mary dover may be a confusion of these two wives, or possibly the misapplication of an unidentified document in which Phelps mentioned a Dover as a relation.

Whatever the case, no evidence has been found for the claimed marriage to Elizabeth or for the claimed marriage to Mary Dover. The conclusion that the latter marriage occurred in 1638 probably came from the birth of Timothy, in August of September 1639. The gap of five years between Timothy and the last child Mary in 1644 suggests that Mary may have been a menopause baby.


The Phelps did sail from Plymouth about 40 miles from Exeter where they joined other families from the southwest counties of England led by the Rev. John White the "great patron of new England migration." The group selected John Maverick and John Wareham as their ministers. There is an inscription for Wareham in the Palisade Cemetery, Windsor, Connecticut. William Phelps was a member of the original congregation formed in England to establish its own colony and church in New England.

Before sailing they kept a solemn day of fasting, preaching and praying in the New Hospital in Plymouth. The party of 140 set out on March 20, 1630, in the Mary and John of 400 tons, described as Mr. Ludlow's vessel, with Capt. Squab, and arrived on May 30. A misunderstanding between the passengers and Captl. Squab led to the ship's company being put off at Natasket (Hull) instead of Charleston. Ten males set out afoot to Charleston Neck and Watertwon, were received, scantily fed and then returned to their group. They found pasturage for their sea-weary animals at Mattapan and named it Dorchester in honor of Rev. White and many of the group from Dorchester. of the man "past middle age and of good estates" were William Phelps, Henry Wolcott and Thomas Ford, and among the young men were Israel Stoughton, George Minot and Nathaniel Duncan. These families have a way of turning up in the Marshall family which is one clue that Elizabeth Phelps had been a Marshall. Their oldest son sailed to Barbgados in the company of other Marshalls soon after his mother's death.

Dorchester, Mass.

The Phelps stayed at Dorchester where, from the first, William Phelps was a prominent and highly respected citizen. On October 19, 1630, he applied as freeman. On November 9th he was on the jury for the trial of Walter Palmer for the murder of Austin Brotchus -- the first trial by jury in New England! He became Constable fo Dorchester on September 27, 1631, and on March 4, 1634, was appointed by the general court to go with a committee to arrange the boundary between Boston and Dorchester. On May 5, 1635, he was a member of the general court for Dorchester. From then on he has many mentions in both Massachusetts and Connecticut.

Windsor, Conn.

During this time the Dutch in New Amsterdam, having explored the Connecticut River to (now) Enfield Falls and wishing to have more settlers along the river to reinforce their settlements, sent an embassage to Plymouth. Soon each questioned the other's rights to be there and each reinforced their lines. In 1634 plans were made by the English to occupy the valley. In 1635 William Phelps was on a commission appointed to govern Connecticut as a separate colony. He signed the agreement with Mr. Prince of Plymouth for the Windsor lands, 7 miles west of the river, paying the Indians 2 coats, 40 shilllings in wampum for a third coat and 15 extra shillings. Later, not being able to prove full payment, he honestly bought it over again (1665) for 4 trucking coats or "whatever will satisfy."

William Phelps moved with his children to Windsor early in 1636. He had first built on the south side of a rivulet there with his brother George a little closer into the settlement. William's lot measured six rods wide, but "being drowned very deep in a flood of 1638" he removed to higher ground. When he moved to higher ground he described his new location as "bounded at one point 40 rods from my dwelling house where it is bounded South by a little brook that falls into the river (Farmington)." Samuel Phelps and John Bartlett witnessed the deed there. This was his meadow lot out on the Poquonock Road just before one comes to Stoughton House, the old stone fort.

William continued his responsible place in Windsor. As a member of the general court in 1637 he declared war against the Pequots. He was a magistrate from 1638 to 1642 and from 1658 to 1662 and foreman of the first grand jury in 1643. He was frequently mentioned as on the petit jury and in 1641 was appointed with a Mr. Welles of Hartford on a committee on lying! It is said that he was an excellent, pious upright man in his public and private life and truly a pillar of Church and State. By the time he had grown elderly and had a son of his name, he became known as "Ould Mr. Phelps" and as such the old church record enters his death on July 14, 1672, after a 42-year residence in New England of which 36 were spent in Windsor. He was buried on the 15th day of July. No probate has been found for William Phelps; he had probably distributed his property among his children before his death.


1. Maude Pinney Kuhns, The MARY AND JOHN, Page. 198.
2. Nancy S. McBride, Phelps-Marshall Kinship, Page 10.
3. F.A.S.G. Fyrtle Stevens Hyde, "unknown short article title."
4. Peter Haring Judd, The Hatch and Brood of Time, Page 301.
5. Judge Oliver Seymour Phelps Phelps Family, 1:72.
6. Myrtle Stevens Hyde, "William Phelps."



William and his brother George sailed to America from Plymouth, England on March 20th, 1630 aboard the ship "Mary and John." This was the first ship of the second fleet (of 17 ships) to come to America. There were 140 passengers on board. The ship reached American shores on May 30th, 1630 and dropped anchor at an island in Boston Harbor, New England.

William seems like he was very honest. He had purchased land from the local Native Americans and somehow it came into dispute whether or not he had paid the purchase price in full. William, unable to prove his purchase, paid for the land a second time, this time to the descendents of the original Native American who had sold him the land 30 years prior. "

Both of these are REALLY suposed to be about the SR so lets compare the two
(I think when someone adds something they should Identify themselfs in case there's a question like this)

Let's take a look

10/16/2010 at 9:46 PM

Thanks Marvin! It's great info - maybe there was a merge between Jr and Sr and the info needs to be realigned to the correct William.

Geni is developing Wiki style capabilities for the "overview" tab, which I'm sure will include date and user ID stamps for info added. A few months away still but that will make it easier.

In the meantime, let's all take a cue from you and *sign* our contributions.

10/16/2010 at 9:50 PM

By my write up there apears to be 3 William Phelps
one born 1560
William Phelps, of Crewkerne
one born 1590
William Phelps, of Windsor, CT
one born 1620
Missing this one (I couldn't find it anyhow)
and another one in 1668
William Phelps

10/16/2010 at 9:52 PM

Does anyone have a copy of the mentioned citations- we need to get this double checked before we do something rash?

10/16/2010 at 9:57 PM

One of the ref above is a personal family tree. Not a valid ref.
One does not exist.

We need a copy of Maude Pinney Kuhns, The MARY AND JOHN !!!

Anyone know of one online?

10/16/2010 at 10:43 PM
10/17/2010 at 6:57 AM

Sure it does, NOT. Either my calculators broken or now we have william philips born in 1595, I'm going to look at it here, and see if I can find the most reliable souce, and see what I find.
Anyone else have any other ref. Speak now or forever hold your piece! (whoops got lost there for a sec)

10/17/2010 at 6:58 AM


We'll get the Phelps sorted! I know they've been a bit of a nightmare, but it's getting there.

10/17/2010 at 7:13 AM

OK, nor he's william phelips , jr in the profile and william phelps I in the tree, love it,
meanwhile we have more marys than carter has pills... no way to tell one from another in the relationship chart.... if the relationship chart had birth dates and death dates I could break at least a couple of the relationships.. if I change rhe name to "ThisMary" for a bit, I'll try to remember to change it back, (LOL)

10/17/2010 at 8:08 AM

Erica Howton@erica
The Mary Phelips (dover) listed at
that were born in 1610 are correct
the Elizabeth may or may not be the right one (let it ride)
I wrote to Grand Imperial Poobah
to ask him to merge his mary, but the rest I'm colabarating with and should have merged.
Can you help getting the 1610 marys merged?

10/17/2010 at 8:11 AM


Be prepared for a nastygram from the GIP. :)

10/17/2010 at 8:11 AM

P.S. If I follow you, will I be notified when you update this, otherwise I have to keep checking back to see if you posted since there's only one msg per disb/day?

10/17/2010 at 8:23 AM

Yes, that's a great way to use "follow." Notes of my actions such as "Erica Howton merged duplicate profiles for Mary Ann Phelps" will show as a "newsfeed" on your home page.

You're pretty smart to have figured that out.

10/17/2010 at 8:43 AM

I'm not sure when they added the follow system, it was request friend before, some people seem pretty made about it. They can always block someone who they don't like.

10/17/2010 at 9:11 AM

I went to change my privacy settings and found a way to add midle names in the relationship tab, got ride of 1 Mary. Many more to go. (got ride of one merge that hadn't been online since march)

10/17/2010 at 9:42 AM

I think it was like finding the right string to pull to unsnarl the whole tangle. It's getting under control now. Just holler when you need more help.

10/17/2010 at 9:49 AM

There's one more merge that needs to be made, she was on last week so mabe it will be done soon (sent a message) then maybe I can do something, hands are tied until then.

Private User
10/17/2010 at 10:41 AM

This is what I have on the Mary and John:

March 10 (February 28 Julian Calendar, Mothering Sunday), 1630: The Winthrop fleet of 14 ships is assembled by 10 Massachusetts Bay Company stock managers, five of which stay behind, and five of which prepare to set out for the New World (appointed Governor John Winthrop, appointed Deputy Governor Thomas Dudley – a replacement for the original appointment of Colonel John Humphry, son-in-law of Lord Tomas Fynes, Earl of Lincoln, after the appointee could not travel –, Isaac Johnson of Rutland, Sir Richard Saltonstall, and John Revel). Men (including tradesmen and other useful persons, such as Richard Wright, tailor of Plymouth and agent for Colonel Humphry), women, children, and necessities are gathered at Cowes near the Isle of Wight. These 14 ships include: the “Arabella” (renamed from the “Eagle” in honor of Lady Arabella Fynes Johnson, age 29, the celebrated wife of Assistant Isaac Johnson, the daughter of the Earl of Lincoln, called posthumously “the Queen of the Colony”), “Talbot”, “Ambose”, “Jewel”, “Mayflower” (different from the one that carried the Pilgrims 10 years earlier), “Whale”, “Success”, “Charles”, “William and Francis”, “Hopewell”, and “Trial”. (The ship “Mary and John” prepares separately at Plymouth in southern England, and will set out earlier.) The cargo of the “Arabella” includes 10,000 gallons (or 50,000 fifths) of wine, 42 tons of beer, and 14 tons of fresh water (Puritans of the time apparently had not yet become fixated on denial of pleasures to self and others).

After that, I have a bunch of entries for the ship "Margaret and John," which I think was another ship (but now I'm questioning myself). They ended up getting dropped at Nantasket Point (present Hull) by the "irascible" Captain Thomas Squibb. I think the settlers ended up at Dorchester after a long walk on the beach (thus the reason I'm questioning myself on the ship's name now).

10/17/2010 at 11:16 AM

There is a data confict at http://www.geni.com/merge/resolve/6000000006422189308
that I can't resolve for william.

thanks Ben (aw yes, thanks for calender conversion, always helps

10/19/2010 at 12:33 PM

Mr. Caulk, if you will send a message to my personal email, I will try to help resolve any conflict which may exist, at least in relation to my information.

A quick look in "the archives" revealed that William Jr may have had three wives.

Mrs. Howton, I don't send nastygrams. I do respond with a strongly worded statements which clearly and precisely expresses my thoughts ; )

4/20/2011 at 9:48 PM

After reading all these discussions...I being a descendant of William Phelps, ca 1593...you guys need to check www.phelpsdna.com - it's the most reliable and accurate source. You should email to Margaret Swanson at mswanson@impulse.net, she's the expert on several Phelps lines, especially William Phelps, ca 1593 and George Phelps, ca1606.

4/21/2011 at 9:46 AM

A dna project open only to people with the name "Phelps" isn't really any help.

Will see what I can find out thru the public links. Not sure if it changes anything.

4/21/2011 at 9:55 AM

I think I'm a Phelps as well. Although I'm related to William Phelps, of Windsor, CT, it's not a direct relationship, but I do have a Phelp X great grandmother.

4/21/2011 at 10:13 AM

Margaret "Peggy" Gallup is my 3rd great grandmother. However her line has not been connected with the Phelps but stops with her father (assuming that her line should be connected with the Phelps).

So her relationship to this branch only shows up as very distant:


4/21/2011 at 11:59 AM

I finally connected Samuel Phelps, father of Margaret "Peggy" Gallup. I am an X great granddaughter of the William Phelps line but I see that right above my 8th (?) great grandfather Nathaniel Phelps, I there are two Williams that are in his tree as his father, so there's work to be done on this line.

I'll be happy to pitch in :)

4/21/2011 at 2:59 PM


So should these profiles be merged Erica and Marvin, since you know more than I do about the family. And also Dorothy and Grand Imperial Poobah.

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