George Adams, of Watertown

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George Adams

Also Known As: "George Addams"
Birthdate: (76)
Birthplace: England
Death: October 10, 1696 (72-80)
Watertown, Middlesex, Massachusetts (Killed by the fall of a rock)
Immediate Family:

Husband of Frances Adams
Father of John Adams, of Colchester; George Adams, of Lexington; Benjamin Adams; Sgt. Daniel Adams; Samuel Adams, of Hartford and 1 other

Occupation: Glover
Managed by: Lexie Shannon Holliday
Last Updated:

About George Adams, of Watertown

Killed "by the fall of a rock," his estate was inventoried Oct. 19, 1696 at £61.13.8. George was a glover. At Watertown, MA by 1645, he was convicted of "selling two guns & strong water to the Indians" in 1653. Living at Watertown in indigence with wife and five children Jan. 1660/1, he removed about 1664 to Lancaster, and spent his last years at Cambridge Farms (now Lexington). Numerous court records exist concerning control of a two hundred acre tract at Lancaster. Soldier in King Philips War.

Note: was censured by the General Court for selling guns and strong water to the Indians. Lacking the means to pay his fine, he was ordered whipped and discharged from prison.

Misfortune dogged George Sr.’s life. Poverty nagged him in Watertown; he ran afoul of the law several times; he was involved in various legal battles to establish and maintain his property rights in Lancaster; his cabin was destroyed by Indians; and his family was divided after three sons moved south to greener pastures. Although still in good health, his misfortune continued when he was accidentally killed near Watertown by a falling rock on October 10, 1696 (Henry Adams, p. 8). 


The primary inheritances he left his family were lessons in how to deal with adversity and 260 acres of abandoned land in a frontier community. Although no physical description of George exists, he likely passed a tall gene to his sons since they were known in Connecticut as being the "three tall Englishmen" (Henry Adams, p. 24).


There has been a great deal of speculation at to the origins of George ADAMS of Watertown but nothing concrete has been proven. The earliest record of George ADAMS is in 1645 when he married Frances TAYLOR the daughter of Richard and Ann TAYLOR of Cambridge, MA. Whether this is the actual year of their marriage or the date it was recorded in the records is uncertain. However, the birth of their first child John on October 16, 1645 is recorded in Watertown where George was known as a glover and a trader. That same year he received 20 acres for his home lot, known as "George Hill" supposedly named for him

In May, 1653 he was found guilty of selling firearms and "strong waters" to the Indians and was consequently "severley whipt" in Boston and discharged to the prison. In January of the following year, he was granted 4 acres in Watertown where he resided until November 1664 when he sold his house and moved back to Lancaster. The Early Town Records of Watertown show George Adams living "in need" with five children.

In 1670, George laid claim to his property in Lancaster that was forfeited due to his absence and inaction and in January of 1671 he was granted 60 acres by the General Court. During this same time, he petitioned the General Court for confirmation of his claim to 200 acres of land that he had received from the Sachem Shoniow several years earlier. It was not until May of 1675, however, that his request was granted.

During King Philip's War, 1675-76, Lancaster was ravaged by the Indians and after the second attack in February of 1676 the town was abandoned. At that time, George is shown as serving in Captain Joseph SILL's Company. He apparently did not return to Lancaster but instead settled again in Watertown. He appears on the 1684 list of property owners of Lancaster as living out of town. In 1692, he is shown living in Cambridge Farms, which is now Lexington, where he was taxed for the ministry.

On October 16, 1696, George accidentally met his death "by a fall of a rock" in Watertown and on the 28th his widow, Frances ADAMS, was appointed administratrix of his estate. According to the Probate Records, his estate was valued 60 pounds, 13s. 8d. including 260 acres of land in Lancaster valued at 50 pounds.

The 200 acre tract of land given to George by the Shoinow Sachem remained in the family until 1715. The deeds recorded at that time and subsequently later reflect a good deal of information regarding the children of George and Frances ADAMS.

On May 24, 1715, George ADAMS and Mary ADAMS, spinster, of Lexington "son and daughter of George ADAMS formerly of Lancaster glover dec.d" sold their rights to their older brother John of Colchester, CT who in turn deeded this and his share of the land to Francis FULLAM.

Eight years later on November 7, 1723, George's son Samuel of Windsor, CT and his grandson Joseph of Simsbury, the eldest surviving son of Daniel, deeded their remaining two shares to Mr. FULLAM.


  •  Genealogies of the Families and Descendants of the Early Settlers of Watertown, Massachusetts, by Dr. Henry Bond (1860)
  • The American Genealogist, "George Adams of Watertown, MA & His Son Daniel of Simsbury, CT," by Gerald James Parsons.


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George Adams, of Watertown's Timeline

October 16, 1645
Age 25
Watertown, Middlesex County, Massachusetts Bay Colony
February 2, 1647
Age 27
Watertown, Middlesex County, Massachusetts Bay Colony
Age 30
Watertown, Middlesex, Massachusett, USA
Age 32
Watertown, Middlesex County, Massachusetts
Age 40
Watertown, Middlesex County, Massachusetts Bay Colony
November 21, 1664
Age 44
Watertown, Middlesex, Massachusetts
October 10, 1696
Age 76
Watertown, Middlesex, Massachusetts
December 10, 1923
Age 76