John Bourne of Marshfield

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John Bourne, Sr.

Birthdate: (73)
Birthplace: Kempsey, Worcestershire, UK
Death: December 8, 1684 (69-77)
Marshfield, Plymouth County, MA, USA
Place of Burial: Marshfield, Plymouth, Massachusetts, United States
Immediate Family:

Son of Deacon Thomas Bourne, of Marshfield and Elizabeth Bourne
Husband of Alice Bourne
Father of Hannah Bailey; Elizabeth Bent; John Bourne, Jr.; Thomas Bourne, Sr.; Lydia Bourne and 4 others
Brother of Margaret Winslow; Joseph Bourne; Martha Tracy; Sarah Anna Smith; Ann Smith and 2 others
Half brother of Sarah Ann Babcock and Richard Bourne, of Sandwich

Managed by: Private User
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About John Bourne of Marshfield

John, supposed to be the only son of the ancestor Thomas Bourne, m. Alice Besbeech, July 18, 1645; she was probably the dau. of Thomas Besbeech, an early settler of Scituate. He died Dec. 8, 1684; his widow, May 7, 1686; ages unrecorded.

"Names of ye Marriages in The Towne of marshfield John Bourne & and Ales Besbege was married ye 18th July 1645." This was the second marriage recorded in the town records of Marshfield, Mass.

The Will of John Bourne of Marshfield, written 27 November 1684, and sworn by Alice Bourne, widow, on 4 March 1684/85 bequeathes to or mentions:

  • wife Ales
  • son Thomas
  • daughter Ales Man
  • son (in law) [John] Man
  • father (in law) Besbeech
  • daughter Ann Bayley
  • son (in law) [John] Bayley
  • daughter Martha Decro
  • daughter Mary
  • daughter Sarah [2, 3]



  1. History of Marshfield, Volume 2 By Lysander Salmon Richards Pg.178
  2. The New England historical & genealogical register and ..., Volume 21 By New England Historic Genealogical Society Pg.82


  • History of Marshfield, Volume 2 By Lysander Salmon Richards
  • Pg.177
    • BOURNE.
  • Tradition points to the Bourne family as originating in Wales, but history records the Marshfield branch as coming from Kent Co., England.
  • Thomas Bourne and his wife, Elizabeth, with several children, came to Plymouth sometime near 1630. He was a resident of Plymouth long enough to be well known there, and was so desirable a citizen that in 1637 the Court of Plymouth Colony granted him and others called "special persons," "that would promise to live at Plymouth on some good farms, and so tie the lands of Plymouth as farms for the same ; and these they might keep their cattle, tilling by some servants," and retain their dwellings in Plymouth.
  • Dec. 4, 1637, a grant of 100 acres was given to Thomas Bourne, and it was the second grant recorded of land in Marshfield. The same day 100 acres was granted to Josiah Winslow. The town was incorporated in 1640, and the same year Thomas Bourne was one of two that were chosen deputies to represent the town in the October General Court, and he was elected three times afterward.
  • Under date of Aug., 1645, the following entry is found: "On a motion being made for one to teach school, we whose names are undersigned, are willing to pay yearly be-
  • Pg.178
  • sides paying for our children; we shall send the following sums." Among others we find the name of Thomas Bourne, who subscribed ten shillings. Thus early, Thomas Bourne, his son, John, and others, took measures to establish a public school. We have one more record of this Thomas, called by one writer the "eldest of the Marshfield settlers and a patriarch of its Eden."
  • It is written Thomas Bourne died and was buried ye 11th May, 1664, age 83. Thomas Bourne had several daughters and only one son, John, who was born in England. He married Alice Besbeach, now called Bisbee, and this is the second marriage entered on the Marshfield records, July 18, 1645. His eldest son was named Thomas, Then we have five successive generations of John Bournes, one of whom is now living. The third or middle John Bourne was a Revolutionary soldier and centenarian. He was born Apr. 10, 1759, and died in 1859. Less than one mile from his home was the homestead of Nathaniel Ray Thomas and later of Hon. Daniel Webster.
  • Mr. Thomas' sympathies were with the British in the early days of the Revolution. He evidently was afraid of the patriotic spirit of his neighbors and townsmen, for he sent to the English authorities for a company of soldiers, who came to guard him. Every night, when calm enough, the sound of the sentry's voice would be wafted across the marsh to the ears of the Bournes. "Twelve o'clock and all is well." That cry helped to stir up the patriotic spirit of the surrounding community, and the boy of 16 drank in so much of the feeling that he shouldered his flint-lock gun and was soon in the trenches, helping to fortify Dorchester Heights. From that on he followed the fortunes of his country in battles and in camp (being near death's door with small-pox), till the last gun was fired. At the close of the war he was in the state of New York, from which state he walked to his home in old Marshfield, there
  • Pg.179
  • to spend the remainder of his long life of one hundred years. The following gives the direct lines of descent of the Bournes to the present time:
  • Thomas Bourne,1 and wife, Elizabeth, came from Kent County, England, about the year 1630.
  • John,2 b. in England. Mar. Alice Besbeech, or Bisbee, July, 1645.
  • Thomas,3 their son, b. in 1647. Mar. Elizabeth Rouse.
  • John,4 their son, b. in 1685. Mar. Abigail Collamore.
  • John,5 their son, b. in 1737. Mar. Lucy Dingley.
  • John,6 their son, b. in 1759, d. 1859. Mar. Martha Sampson.
  • John,7 their son, b. in 1790. Mar. Ruth Ford.
  • John H.,8 their son, b. 1829. Mar. Sarah T. Walker. He has served on the Board of Selectmen and on the Board of School Committee; was also a member of the State Board of Agriculture for 3 years.
  • Proctor Bourne, b. in 1791. Mar. Temperance Thomas. He was Postmaster of Marshfield for many years, keeping a store in connection with the postoffice and serving the town as its treasurer and collector. His children are all dead, but two grandchildren are now living : Annie F. Calligan and Emma P. Kaler, with one great-grandchild, Grace B. Williams, all living at Evanston, Ill.


This book claims Thomas Bourne died in 1684, not 1664 & has more than one son (could this later death be for Thomas the son of John & Alice?)

  • Paine ancestry. The family of Robert Treat Paine, signer of the Declaration ... By Sarah Cushing Paine, Charles Henry Pope Pg.59
  • Pg.59
  • Thomas Bourne = Elizabeth . . .
    • Margaret Bourne = Josiah Winslow.
      • Rebecca Winslow = John Thacher.
        • Bethia Thacher = James3 Paine.
  • THOMAS BOURNE was a resident of Plymouth in 1636 ; January 2, 1636-7, he was admitted a freeman of the Colony and at the same date a tract of land was assigned to his son Richard for his use.
  • He removed to Marshfield early in the settlement of that place if not at its very beginning ; was chosen one of its deputies or representatives in 1642 and at later times. He was a citizen of repute, a man of substance.
  • He married (perhaps as his first wife) Elizabeth __ , who was buried in Marshfield, July 18, 1660 ; he married afterward a wife named Martha, who survived him.
  • He was buried May 11, 1684, aged, as the record avers, 83 years. He left a will in which he appointed his son John "right heir and executor," and gave his estate to his daughters, "Bradford," "Smith," "Winslow" and "Tilden" ; to son Nathaniel Tilden ; to John, Thomas, Joseph and Robert Waterman, and (the minister) "Mr. Arnold."
  • Of his seven children the sixth, Margaret Bourne, married Josiah Winslow.


  • Representative men and old families of southeastern Massachusetts ..., Volume 3
  • Pg.1289
    • BOURNE. The Bourne family of south-eastern Massachusetts is descended from
  • (I) Thomas Bourne, "the eldest of the Marshfield settlers and a patriarch on its Eden," who appears at Plymouth in 1637, a freeman of that Colony of Jan. 2, 1638. Judge Savage says he may probably have come from the County of Kent, bringing family. "His home lands were situated adjoining the estates of his sons-in-law, Josiah Winslow, Sr., and Robert Waterman, to whom he gave of his own lands liberally." He was also a large land holder in the south part of the Colony. "He was a man of substance and repute." His wife Elizabeth was buried July 18, 1660, aged seventy years. He was buried May 11, 1664, at the age of eighty-three years. His will, probated June 9, 1664, made his son John right heir and executor, and bequeathed to
  • Pg.1290
  • him, to daughters Martha Bradford, Anne Smith, Margaret Winslow and Lydia Tilden; to Nathaniel Tilden, to John, Thomas, Joseph and Robert Waterman ; and to Mr. Arnold. His children were: John, Martha, who married (first) John Bradford, son of Governor Bradford, and (second) Thomas Tracy; Elizabeth, who married Thomas (Robert ?) Waterman ; Anne, who married Nehemiah Smith ; Margaret, who married Josiah Winslow, brother of Governor Winslow; and Lydia, who married Nathaniel Tilden.
  • (II) John Bourne, son of Thomas, born perhaps in England, married July 18, 1645, Alice, daughter of Thomas Besbedge or Besbeech (the second marriage on the town book). Mr. Bourne succeeded to the homestead, which in 1854 and later was in the possession of the then venerable John Bourne, a descendant in the fifth generation of the immigrant Thomas and a Revolutionary patriot who entered the service at the commencement of the struggle and was a prisoner of war when peace was declared; he died in October, 1859, in the 101st year of his age. The children of John and Alice Bourne were: Elizabeth, born in 1646; Thomas, in 1647; Alice, in 1649; Ann, in 1651; Martha, in 1653; Mary, in 1660; and Sarah, in 1663.
  • (III) Thomas Bourne, son of John, born Oct. 27, 1647, married (first) April 16, 1681, Elizabeth, daughter of John and Anice (or Annis) (Pabodie) Rouse, of Marshfietd, the latter daughter of John and Isabel Pabodie, original settlers of Duxbury. She died April 9, 1701, and he married (second) Nov. 23, 1702, Elizabeth Holmes, who died April 2, 1707. His children were: John, born June 8, 1685, who married Abigail Collamore, of Scituate; Elizabeth, who died April 14, 1689; George, born 29th of 3d month, 1690; and Jedediah and Josiah (twins), born 29th of 10th month, 1692.


  • The New England historical and genealogical register (1847) Year 1860 Vol. 14.
  • Pg.82
  • BOURNE, John, Marshfield, Oct. 7, a. 100 yrs. 5 mos. 27 ds. ; a Revolut'ry soldier.
  • He was a descendant, in the fifth generation, from Thomas and Elizabeth Bourne, early settlers of said township, and resided and deceased on the estate granted to this immigrant ancestor, Dec. 4, 1637, by the Court of the Old Colony, from whom it had passed to him by regular descent. The ancestor deceased May 11, 1664, a. 83 ; his wife, 1660, a. 70.
  • Their children were : —
  • Lydia, the wife of Elder Nathl. Tilden, of Scituate, to whom she was united previous to their emigration.
  • Martha, who m. John, eldest son of Gov. Wm. Bradford.
  • Margaret, who m. Josias, youngest brother of Gov. Edward Winslow, 1636.
  • Elizabeth, who m. Robert Waterman, 1638; and Anna, who m. Rev. Nehemiah Smith, 1639. Messrs. Bradford and Smith removed to Norwich, Conn.
  • John, supposed to be the only son of the ancestor Thomas Bourne, m. Alice Besbeech, July 18, 1645; she was probably the dau. of Thomas Besbeech, an early settler of Scituate. He died Dec. 8, 1684 ; his widow, May 7, 1686; ages unrecorded.
  • Thomas Bourne, eldest son of John, b. Oct. 27, 1647, m. 1, Elizabeth Rouse, April 16, 1681 ; she was dau. of John and Anice (Pabodie) Rouse, of Marshfield ; she deceased April 9, 1701. He m. 2, Elizabeth Holmes, Nov. 2, 1702.


  • Pg.218
  • BOURNE, JOHN, Marchfield, s. of Thomas, perhaps b. in Eng. m. 18 July 1645, Alice, d. of Thomas Besbedge the sec. m. on town's book, being in his will of Nov. 1672 so describ. and her ch. nam. Thomas, b. 1647; and Sarah, 1663, with allusion to other sis. wh. were Eliz. b. 1646; Alice, 1649; Ann, 1651; Martha. 1653, and Mary, 1660; there was bur. 8 Dec. 1684; and his wid. was bur. 9 May 1686.
  • Pg.219
  • BOURNE, THOMAS, early at Marshfield, may prob. have come from Co. Kent, bring. fam. hav. been at Plymouth 1637, freem. of that col. 2 Jan. 1638, and w. Eliz. bur. 18 July 1660, aged 70, was a man of substance and repute, d. a. 1554, aged 83, leav. wid. Martha, ch. prob. all by w. Eliz. John, above ment.; Martha, wh. m. 1 John Bradford, s. of the Gov. 2. Thomas Tracy, d at Norwich 1689; Eliz. m. 9 Dec. 1638, Robert Waterman; Ann m. 21 June 1640, Nehemiah Smith; Margaret m. Josiah Winslow, br. of Gov. Edward; and Lydia m. Nathaniel Tilden. His will of 2 May 1664, made s. John excor. names ea. d. and Lydia, d. of Lydia, beside John, Thomas Joseph and Robert Waterman, and Mr. Arnold, his min.,
  • THOMAS, Marshfield, prob. s. of John, m. 18 Apr. 1681, Eliz. d. of John Rouse, had Eliz. wh. d. 14 Apr. 1689.


  • BISBEE, Alice
  • b. 29 JUN 1624 Frittendon, Kent, England
  • d. 7 MAY 1686 Marshfield, Plymouth, Mass.
  • Parents:
  • Father: BISBEE, Thomas
  • Family:
  • Marriage: 18 JUL 1645 Marshfield, Plymouth, Mass.
  • Spouse: BOURNE, John
  • b. ABT 1619 Kempsey, Worcester, England
  • d. DEC 1684 Marshfield, Plymouth, Mass.
  • Parents:
  • Father: Bourne, Thomas
  • Mother: Rouse, Elizabeth
  • Children:
    • BOURNE, Elizabeth
    • BOURNE, Thomas
    • BOURNE, John b. 22 OCT 1647 Marshfield, Plymouth, Mass.
    • BOURNE, Alice
    • BOURNE, Mary b. 5 JUN 1650 Marshfield, Plymouth, Mass.
    • BOURNE, Ann
    • BOURNE, Martha
    • BOURNE, Mary b. 5 JUN 1660 Marshfield, Plymouth, Mass.
    • BOURNE, Sarah b. 17 OCT 1663 Marshfield, Plymouth, Mass.
  • From:


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John Bourne of Marshfield's Timeline

Kempsey, Worcestershire, UK
Age 17
Weymouth, Norfolk, MA, USA
May 31, 1646
Age 35
Marshfield, Plymouth, Massachusetts
October 22, 1647
Age 36
Marshfield, Plymouth, Massachusetts, USA
October 22, 1647
Age 36
Marshfield, Plymouth, Massachusetts, USA
Age 37
Marshfield, Plymouth, Massachusetts, USA
March 4, 1649
Age 38
Marshfield, Plymouth, Massachusetts, USA
January 31, 1651
Age 40
Sandwich, (Present Barnstable County), Plymouth Colony (Present Massachusetts), (Present USA)
November 2, 1651
Age 40
Marshfield, Plymouth, MA, USA