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Josiah Rootes

Also Known As: "Roots"
Birthplace: Great Chart, Ashford, Kent, England
Death: June 03, 1683
Beverly, Essex County, Massachusetts Bay Colony
Immediate Family:

Son of Edmund Rootes and Emma Mason
Husband of Susanna Rootes
Father of Josiah Rootes; Thomas Roots; Susanna Roots; John Roots and Bethia Lovett
Brother of Edmund Rootes; Ember Roots; Richard Rootes; Thomas Rootes, Sr. and Joshua Rootes

Immigration Year: 1634
Managed by: Gene Daniell
Last Updated:
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Immediate Family

About Josiah Rootes

Josiah Rootes (bef. 1613 - 1683), son of Edmund Rootes and Emma (Norrington) Mason, married Susanna.



He was a brother of Thomas and Richard, and probably of Joshua of Salem, Mass. He had lands granted to him there in 1636, and again in 1649. He would appear to have been a native of Great Chart, a parish in England, about fifty miles southeast from London. He was, according to the record, the first of the name and of his family who came to this country. He immigrated here in 1634 in the ship Hercules, which returned in July "by St. Georges' to cut masts to carry to England." * The following memorandum from a historical work exhibits the form and process by which our ances tors emigrating at that period became settlers of New England :f " A list or register of all such persons as embarked themselves in the good ship called the Hercules, of Sandwich, of the burthen of 200 tons, John Witherly, Master, and thence trans ported from Sandwich to the plantation called New England in America, with the certificates from the ministers where they last dwelt of their conversation and conformity to the orders and discipline of the church ; and that they had taken the oath of allegiance and supremacy." Among other names in this list appears that of Jos. Rootes of Great Chart, with the certificate of Robert Gorsham, curate of Great Chart, 20 March, 1634.

He came to Salem, and settled on the Beverly side, and joined the Salem church in 1648. On the 23d of April, 1667, the brethren belonging to Bass River petitioned the first church of Salem to set off as a church, with Rev. John Hale as pastor, and the names of Josiah Rootes and family are attached to this petition. Hence he became one of the founders of the Beverly church.

His wife's name was Susanna, as appears by the will made by him May 15, 1683, just nineteen days before he died. [See Sup. Doc. No. VI.] In this document he gave his personal estate to his wife Susanna till his youngest son Jonathan should come of age. His widow Susanna was one of those unfortunate ones arraigned for witchcraft. The complaint was entered by Thos. Putnam, clerk of the parish in Salem village, May 21, 1692, on account of injuries supposed to be committed upon his wife, a poor nervous body, and upon sundry other per sons afflicted with the mania. The only evidence against her was that she was accustomed to absent herself from prayers while living in Andrew Elliott's house, and that said Elliott and wife heard her rise in the night and talk in the room below, also " flying in yc chamber over said roome as if there were 5 or 6 persons with her." She had her trial before Justices Ha- thorne and Corwin on the 21st of May, and she was sent to Boston jail with other prisoners, Monday the 23d May, 1692, where she was put in irons. There is no record of her appear ance before the Court of Oyer and Terminer, which had juris diction in cases of Witchcraft. She was probably discharged shortly from custody because of insufficient evidence, or released when the delusion abated. [See Sup. Doc. No. IX.] There is no record of her decease.


Children of "Josiah and Susanna Rootes : They had baptized, Sep. 24, 1648, the first four.

  • 5. I. Josiah, b. a. 1642, f. ; d. a. 1685.
  • 6. II. Bethia, b. a. 1644.
  • 7. III. John, b. a. 1646, f. ; d. May 25, 1723.
  • 8. IV. Susanna, m. Haskins and had a child baptized in 1668, 2 yrs. 6 mo. (no name given)
  • 9. V. Thomas, bap. Feb. 16, 165 1 , f. ; d. 1683-4.
  • 10. VI. Jonathan, b. a. 1666, f. ; d. before 1729


  • from
  • Great Migration 1634-1635, R-S. (Online database. New England Historic Genealogical Society, 2012.) Originally published as: The Great Migration, Immigrants to New England, 1634-1635, Volume VI, R-S, by Robert Charles Anderson. Boston: New England Historic Genealogical Society, 2009. see featured name "Joseph Rootes"subscription site
  • Laura Cooper, “Josiah Rootes," _Munson, Underwood, Horn, Fairfield and Allied Families_ ( : accessed 2013); among many others, cites George Francis Dow, Records and *Files of the Quarterly Courts of Essex County, IX: 67.
  • Perley, Sidney. The History of Salem, Massachusetts (S. Perley, Salem, Mass., 1924) Vol. 1, Page 373: text and footnote about Josiah Roots. link
  • "Massachusetts, Town Clerk, Vital and Towns Records, 1579-2001," images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 2013), Essex > Beverly > Births, marriages, deaths 1653-1890 > image 258 of 589 for John 2d Lovett and Bethia Rootes family entries, mention of Josiah Rootes.
  • Robert Charles Anderson, _Great Migration: Immigrants to New England, 1634-1635_; digital images, _American Ancestors_ (accessed 2013), 5 (2007): 71-74, "Emma Mason."
  • “Josiah Rootes” (sketch), _Doug Sinclair’s Archives_ ( : accessed 2013)
  • Root, James. Root Genealogical Records. 1600-1870. (R.C. Root, Anthony & Co., New York, 1870) Page 50-2 GoogleBooks
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Josiah Rootes's Timeline

March 7, 1613
Ashford, Kent, England
Age 28
<Badby, Northamptonshire, England>
Age 33
September 24, 1648
Age 35
Age 34
Beverly, Essex, Massachusetts, United States
Age 34
Beverly, Essex County, Massachusetts Bay Colony
June 3, 1683
Age 70
Beverly, Essex County, Massachusetts Bay Colony