About John Hancock, of Accomack
- M, b. circa 1642
John was born circa 1642.1 John was living in August 1678 at Accomack Co, VA.1
- Ann (nn) b. c 1640, d. 3 Mar 1702
- (bastard child) Hancock b. 18 Feb 1667/68
Children (?) (they were legally Miles Gray's sons, regardless of who fathered them)
- John Gray+ b. c 1669
- Alexander Gray b. c 1670
Anecdote* 19 August 1673 On 19 Aug 1673 in Acc Co, William Anderson gave to John and Alexander, sons of Miles and Ann Gray, two cow calves and their increase, which would be divided when the oldest child (John) attained the age of 10 years.1
- [S698] JoAnn Riley McKey, Accomack Co, VA, Court Order Abstracts, 1671-1673, Volume 3, p. 140.
On 2 Mar 1666, Ann, wife of Miles Gray, admitted adultery with John Hancock from Apr 1665 to 2 Mar 1666 and asks husband's forgiveness. On 18 Feb 1667, Ann had a bastard child and Miles left her.
In 1669, Jane the wife of Robert Hill who had formerly been appointed whipper for a year, was ordered to "some time in each month Jane Hill shall go to the house of Mrs. Ann Toft and likewise to all other houses where the like order shall be given, and that the sheriff or deputy see that Jane Hill do with a fitting whip give unto John Hancock, Ann Gray, Adam Rocinson and Penelope Stafford twenty lashes on their bare backs soundly laid on, and this is to be continued for a year, once in each month" (Acc Co Orders, 1666-70, p. --).
(This section of the Miles Files is sloppily written, but it appears Mrs. Ann Toft bought off the law with a substantial fine of tobacco - perhaps part of the fine she had received from Miles Gray(!) for fathering a bastard on her servant Hannah Leach.) Note: "Mrs." was an honorific based on the amount of property she owned - she was not married at this time.
- [S599] Virginia Accomack County, Accomack Co, VA, Deeds & Wills, 1678-1682(viii), p. 16.
Hancocks appear sporadically on the lower Delmarva, but their paper trail is thin and scanty. Not much is known abut this one except that he was the adulterous partner of Ann Gray, and fathered at least one extramarital child with her.