Samuel Plummer

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Samuel Plummer

Also Known As: "Samuel Plumer of Newbury"
Birthplace: Norfolk, England
Death: before October 14, 1702
Newbury, Essex, Massachusetts
Place of Burial: Newbury, Essex, Massachusetts, United States
Immediate Family:

Son of Francis Plummer, of Newbury and Ruth Plummer
Husband of Mary Plummer
Father of Mary Swett; Samuel Plummer; Ephraim Plummer; John Plummer; Hannah Plummer and 8 others
Brother of Hannah Plummer; Mary Bennett and Joseph Plummer

Occupation: Owned a ferry and was deputy to the general court
Managed by: Private User
Last Updated:

About Samuel Plummer

Samuel Plummer was born in England about 1619 and came to Newbury, MA, with his father and mother about 1634 or 1635. He was a yeoman and lived most of his life in Newbury.

Samuel's and Mary's children were:

Samuel PLUMMER, Mary PLUMMER, John PLUMMER, *Ephraim PLUMMER, Hannah PLUMMER, Silvanus PLUMMER, Ruth PLUMMER, Elizabeth PLUMMER, Deborah PLUMMER, Joshua PLUMMER, Lydia PLUMMER.

Note: In 1642, the town granted him some land in the following language: ---

In Consideration of Samuell Plummer his resigning & yelding into the townes handes seaven acres of ex-change land out of his father’s two and twenty at the ------ whgich his father gave him and akers of divide which he doth by this psents. They granted him -----hale his house lot and halfe an aker that was joh- -----chins abd a aker and halfe that was formerly fa---- knights to mr. Brownes and an aker of his owne lo----- the hill to enjoy to him and his heirs forever.

Note: The following extracts from the town records relate to an exchange of land with Edmund Moores:-----

Samuell Plummer of this town March 1st, 1648. Acknowledged to have sould unto Edmund Moores of this towne, also, his foure akers of lands that lyeth in the verge of lotts that butteth on the lane going downe to watts his seller on the righte hande of the street being at ye west end of the lott, the lande of Henry Somerby on the north side & the lande of francis Plummer on the south to remaine to him & his heirses forever for & in Consideration of Seaven Akers of marish & meadow

that lyeth in the great marish on the east side of those lotts that lyeth in the old towns from newbury River up to the oxe Comon. Before me Anth. Somerby


Edmund Moores of this town March 1st, 1648 Acknowledged to have sould unto Samuell Plummer also of this town for & in Consideration of foure Akers of planting land ye lyeth on the Right hand of that lane that goeth down to watts seller, all his seaven Akers of Marish and meadow that lyeth in the great marish, bounded with the land of John Pike senr. on the north & east & with the land of francis plummer on the South & the verge of lotts that lyeth between Newbury great river and the oxe common on the ------ to remaine to him & his heires for ever. before me Anth. somerby.


At a generall meeting of the towns march 6: 1671 /72 ....Samuell plummer proposed to surrender up all his right Title & interest in his fathers twenty acres neere the little river for about three acres of marsh in the necke reserving the timber for himself.

At a general meeting of the towne April 29, 1672 whereas the towne of Newbury and Samuell Plummer made choyse of Capt. will Gerrish, Archelaus Woodman Stephen \Greenleife Daniell Peirce senr. & John Emerson to issue a motion of Sam: Plummer about

the exchange of what L:and the said Plummer hath by the Little River in Lobbs pound derived from his father ffrancis Plummer as by deed appeared. It is agreed this eleventh day of May 1672, That ffrancis Plummer & Sam Plummer doe declare themselves satisfied for all their interest (except wood & timber) what interest they have had or may in the said land or to any exchange the Towne may make with any man for the said Land, although by agreement if disposed of it would be bee theirs for and in consideration of a parcell of meadow, over the River in the necke, about four acres bee it more or lesse, bouned from the south corner post by a pond from his own Land to anotherr Pond which is neare a strait lyne from thence to another pond, which lyes west from that pond & so to the great Creeke to a Stake agreed upon by us, which runs into the great River and so to the great River upon the north his own Land on the est & the Comon on the South. This being the full lssue of the exchange & demand that may be made by ffrancis Plummer his heirs or assig or Sam: Plummer his heirs or assigues. In witness hereof wee have put our hands this 11th of May 1672

Note: Will Gerrish, Archelaus Woodman, John Emery Semr., Steven Greenleafe


Mr. Plummer’s real estate transactions, as recorded in the registry of deeds, are several in number. In 1666, he bought of William Deal of Haverhill twelve and one-half acres of land in the east part of that town; * and the next year he sold it to John Swaddock. +

Note: * Old Norfolk Registry of Deeds book 2, page 133

Note: + Old Norfok Registry of Deeds book 3, page 70.


He purchased of John Perry of Newbury, for thirty-five pounds, April 1, 1651, “all that his house land meadow marsh & upland containing 21 acres be it more or less eight acres of it being partly upland and partly measdow commonly called the dishermans lott being bounded with Newbury great river on the north the land of Henry Sewall on the east & west & Steven Kent’s land on the south. The other land being nine acres adjoining to the house bounded with the land of Daniel Thurston on the west the marsh on the south; other four acres of it lying in the same is also bounded with the said river on the north and the land of said Mr. Sewall on the east West and south and four acres also adjoining to the said nine acres on the east wch the said John Perry formerly bought of Abell Huse with privilidge of freehold which John Merrell also sold to him formerly belonging to John Kelly deceased.”* June 3, 1651, Mr. Plummer bought of William Gerrish of Newbury, for one hundred pounds, “ All that his dwelling house barn hayhouse with all other housen on the ground situated in Newbury old-town with twelve acres of broken up ground or thereabouts be it more or less with six acres of pasture ground adjoining to it on the south side , but ting on the river with islands & flatts, ....also all shelves dressers dores with their locks & keys to the said house belonging with a freehold or priveledge of commoning; & what other land the said William Gerrish hath in the ould town Newbury bounded high street on the north the green on the east Newbury river on the south and Anthony Shorts land on ye west.” He sold to William Sawyer, in 1656, five acres of salt marsh in the great neck in Newbury and bought it back ten years later. He also conveyed to Sawyer ten acres of marsh at a place called Jericho in the great marsh in Newbury, in 1656, and bought it back ten years later.

Note: The activities mentioned above are found recorded in the Ipswich Register of Deeds Book 1, page 130, 129, and 185 ; and in Book 3 pages 10 and 13.


Mr. Plummer conveyed to his son Sylvanus, upon the occasion of his first marriage, Jan. 18, 1681/1682, one new house with an orchard, containing half-an-acre of land, the land having formerly belonged to Mr. Sewall; also twenty acres of upland & pasture & plow land joining to my house bounded with the river upon the south Mr. Kents \7 Rich Doles land westerly, John Kents orchard & the hight st. Northerly and the orchard of John Webster & the Greene easterly together with my house barne & all other out houseings orchards fences appertaining;” sixty-seven acres of marsh at Jericho in the great marsh; sixteen acres of pasture land adjoining to the said meadow southerly and easterly with the land of Jpohn Emery and Ephraim Northerly and the land of Richard Dole southerly and by merrimack st. on the west;” and his freehold right to the common lands in Newbury. Nov. 14, 1698. “In consideration of ye afection he had to his dutiful son Joshua Plummer of Newbury and as a recompence for said son’s good service which he had done for him in his old age,” he conveyed to him “a parcell of about three acres of upland with dwelling house barn standing upon the same bounded upon ye high street northerly by ye green commonly caled Old Town Green easterly by John Kents orchard Westerly by ye land of Silvanus Plummer Southerly from ye Northerly corner of John Websters Orchard upon a straight line to ye south-east corner of John Kents orchard; “ a two acre lot known as “cheneys lott with one acre & a half of pasture land adjoining to it ye whole being bounded with land formerly in possession of richard Kent lat of Newbury deceased on ye west John Kents land & the high st on ye north and the grantors

pasture on ye East and ye river on ye South;” one and one-half acres of land “bounded with Ephraim Plummers land on ye north Richard Doles land on ye South Merrimack street and Richard Doles Orchard on ye west & the Grantors Pasture on ye east;” a little orchard on ye south side of ye great Hill Joyning to ye High street; “ four acres of marsh on Plum island, “which I have possessed for many years past; “ ten acres of marsh on Newbury river; the wood and timber growing on

twenty acres of land in Lobbs Pound; the grantor’s rate lot laid out to him in the “upper woods beuond Artichock River; : and six acres of pasture in a place called John Emery’s neck.

Note: In 1688, he conveyed to John Emery, Sr. of Newbury about one and one-half acres of marsh on Plum island, in Newbury.

Note: Mr. Plummer lived, during the latter part of his life, at least, west of the green and about thirty rods north of the river, in an old house that formerly stood where the residence of Dr. Daniel T. Plummer stood in 1900.


The travel from Boston and Salem to Portsmouth was doubtless through this little settlement, and Samuel Plummer established a ferry across the river near his house, probably, previous to 1649, as that year, in answer to his petition, the general court granted him liberty of two pennies for each person he ferried across the stream. Some years later, after Thurlow’s bridge was built across the river, he petitioned the general court again “humbly Shewing that by a county highway and

bridge set fourth & erected up the river by ye county court of Ipswich for ye benefit of ye county his inheritance & trade is much weakened & endangered & humbly desiring this court to make such due reparation to him in consideration thereof as in their wisdomes they shall see meet.” The erection of the bridge did not cause the abolition of the ferry, and the court allowed Mr. Plummer “to take one penny more than formerly for the passage of each person & each beast that he is and shall be discharged of all rates that are or shall be made in refference to the bridge and highway mentioned in his petition so long as he shall duly attend ye ferry.” He was conducting the ferry as late as 1684, when the towen paid him ten shillings for ferriage.


Mr. Plummer was publicly known all his life. He served in ther county court as a trail juror in 1647, 1664, 1668, and 1679 and as a grandjuryman in 1665,1666,1667,1673,1677,1680, and 1681. He also served, in 1648, on a jury of inquest which sought to discver the cause of the death of a young son of Thomas Smith of Newbury, who was found in a pit on the green.


He also held numerous town offices. He was a fence viewer for the Neck in 1666 and 1680, and he probably lived ther for a while, perhaps for some twenty years, until he took up his abode on the other side of the river. He was chosen constable in 1671, but held the then honorable office of tithingman in 1680,1682, 1684-1686 and 1697. He served as one of the selectmen, to manage the prudential affairs of the town in 1665, 1670, 1673 and 1681; and was the representative of the town in the general court in 1676. In those days the inducements to serve as a legislator were not very strong, except the honor. It necessitated a long and tedious journey through a country little travelled, and the pay was small, but this was a year that demanded able deputies, as the Indian war was about at an end, leaving the people poor in goods and weak in defence, so many of the able men having been killed.

Note: Mr. Plummer took the oath of a freeman when about twenty-two years of age, and with most of the men of the colony took the oath of allegiance to the King in 1678.

Note: He served on committees in the church many times, and assisted in the settlement of estates.


Mr. Plummer was one of the signers of the petition to the general court for reversal of its action in regard to the punishment of Robert Pike of Salisbury. Although he was not quite as assertive as his younger brother, yet he was in full sympathy with the feeling entertained by his entire family and others that the right of petition to a representative body chosen by themselves was a natural one.


He was the most prominent member of his family in the early local church troubles. The church in Newbury and churches generally in New England originally were governed in the congregational way, and for the first ten years all weent smoothly in the church at Newbury. Mr. Parker had at first supported the congregational system, but a few years later entertained the idea of control by the clergy. Then began to rise a restlessness on the part of the laity that they should have a voice in their own affairs. The church was awakening to its position when the assemby of elders was held a Cambridge, Aug. 4, 1643. The presbyterery system at Newbury was discussed freely, and the famous Cambridge platform, which was the result of the convention, was in great degree the outgrowth of the discussion. In Newbury this feeling against the control by the clergy was manifest in 1664, by the town voting to reduce Mr. Parker’s salary. In 1669, the matter was so acute that the civil authority was sought to adjust the differences and restore harmony. The people were tenacious of their supposed rights, and jealous of every real or apparent encroachment upon them. The church was divided into two nearly equal parties. Edward Woodman, the leader of the congregational side, was a man of talent, influence, firmness and decision. One of his most devoted supporters was Samuel Plummer. Mr. Parker continued his labors, and both factions regularly attended the services of the church. Each party claimed to constitute a majority of the members of the church. Councils were called to advise, and each party held meetings, passed orders etc. When the matter was brought before the county court the judges had diverse opinions, and so the civil power proved inadequate.


On a Sunday in February, 1670, one of the opposers of Mr. Parker read a paper in the open congregation after meeting without leave of the elders, charging Mr. Parker with being the cause of the division and trouble. Mr. Woodman called a “church meeting” at which his party “considered” the charges, and found Mr. Parker guilty and worthy of blame. This decision was reported to him by Samuel Plummer and three other men, and Mr. Plummer read the finding of the meeting to him.


The next month, Mr. Parker was suspended from all official acts in the church. A number of letters passed between factions, each exhorting the other not to be obstinant, but to submit to the disipline of the church. Samuel Plummer was generally the spokesman on these occasions.,

Note: The next month, at a council , called for the purpose, a covenant was agreed upon, but it was of brief continuance, and the ecclesiatical storm again raged.


May 29, 1671, the county court decided that the doings of Mr. Woodman’s party were improper and offensive, not being a majority of the church, and the participants were accordingly fined. Francis Plummer, the father of Samuel was fined one mark and Joseph and Samuel, the sons a noble each. After some months, quietude again settled over the church.


Mr. Plummer married Mary, daughter of Samuel and Elizabeth Bitfield, about 1646. She was probably living in Boston at that time. Mr. Bitfield died in 1660, having, in his will, devised his residence in Boston to his wife for her life and then to his grandson Samuel Plummer Jr., to be entailed in his family. Mrs. Bitfield died in 1669, and Samuel Plummer Jr., took possession of the Bitfield homestead upon his marriage the next year.

Note: Mrs. Plummer died in 1701, and Mr. Plummer died in the summer of the following year, at the age of eighty-three.

Note: The following is an accurate copy of Mr. Plummer’s will transcribed from the original instrument on file in the office of the probate court at Salem:----


In ye name of God I Samuel Plummer of Newbury in the County of Essex in ye province of the Massachusetts Bay in New England (yeamon) being in Bodily health & of a disposing mind do Humbly Comitt my Soule into ye hands of God who gave it & my Body to ye earth hoping thro’ ye Mercies of God in Jesus christ to have a happye resurrection

Note: And for my Worldly Goods I do dispose as is Heerrafter expressed Imprm. To my son Samuel of Boston I give five pounds in or as money to to be paid by my son Silvanus Plummer wth in one moneth after my Death Besides what I formerly gave him.

Note: Item To my son Ephraim Plummer I give one shilling in money to be paid by my excutr besides what I formerly gave him.

Note: Item. To my son Silvanus Plummer I give one shilling to be payd by my executr besides ye housing & land that I have given him by deed of gifts under my hand & seale


Ite To my son Joshua Plummer I give all my utensiles of Husbantry as also all the division or divisions of land that shall be layd out in any of ye Comons or undevided lands of Newbury to me or my right by vertu of my paying Rates in the years

1684 & 1685 to the Ministry in Newbury according to the votes of sd Towne in the year 1685 besides the housing & lands wch I gave to my said son by a deed under my hand & seale bearing date Novenbr 14th 1698.

Note: Ite To my son in law Nathaniel Hazeltine who formerly marred wth my Daughter Ruth (now deceased) I give one shilling to be payd by my executr besides what I formerly gave to my sd Daughter.

Note: Ite To my Daughter Mary Swett the wife of John Swett I give one shilling to be payd by my executr besides what I have formerly given her.

Note: Ite To my Daughter Hanah Bachelour the wife of David Bachelour I give one shilling to be payd by my executr besides what I have formerly given her.


Ite I give to my Daughter Elizabeth Jackman the wife of Richard Jackman I give five pounds in or as mony to be payd by my executor as also the Great Bed in my Kitchen Chamber wth one Bolster to the sd Bed belonging to be delivered to her

imedediatly after my Death.

Note: Ite To my Daughter Deborah Jaques the wife of Stephen Jaques I give one shilling to be paid by my executor besides what I have formerly given her.

Note: Ite To my son in law Joseph Morse who Marred wth my Daughter Lydia (deceased) I give one shilling besides what I formerly give her wch shilling is to be payd by my executor.

Note: . Ite To my Grand Daughter Lydia Morse the daughter of Joseph Morse I give one shilling to be pd by my executor.

Note: Ite To Bittfield Plummer the son of my son Ephraim Plummer I give five pounds in or as money to be payd by my son Silvanus Plummer wthin one month after my decease also I give him three of my Great platters.

Note: My Will is that Kate my Indian servant at my death shall be free & at her own dispose & I give her one flock bed one Blanket & one coverlid.


All ye rest of my Estate both real & personall (not formerly by me disposed of in this my last will & Testament or other wise that is due to me by Bill bond Booke or other wise or that in time to come may become due to me I give to my son

Joshua Plummer hereby appoynting him to be the sole executor of this my last will & Testament my debts & funerall charges to be by him discharged heerby revoaking all former wills of mine. In wittness I the sd Samuel Plummer as my last will &

Testament have heerunto sett my hand & seale this 24th day of January. Ano Domi 1701/2

Note: Sighned Sealed & declared

Note: by Samuel Plummer

Note: in presents of us Samuell Plummer [SEAL]

Note: Joseph Willet

Note: Richard Dole ye 3d

Note: Henry Short


Note: This will was proved Oct. 14,1702, at which time an inventory was filed in court by the executor. The following is an exact copy of this inventory taken from the original document on file in the office of the probate court at Salem:-----

Note: An Inventory of the estat of samuell Plummer lat of Newbury decest taken this 23 dy of september 1702.

Note: to thre oxen & 5 Cowes and 3 Calfes and 7 young cattell 33 0 0

Note: to 15 shep; and 7 lambs: 4lb 8s 0d

Note: to a horse 20s to 11 swine 5lb 10s 0d 10 18 0

Note: to waring apparrill wowllin and linen and bookes 14 0 0

Note: to 2 farther bead and 3 flok beds and 5 coverleds a

Note: blinkit 2 ruges 14 0 0

Note: to 2 bedsteds and a paire of Curtins; and bedcords 2 0 0

Note: to 2 trunckes and a chist; and 3 tabals; and 5 joyent

Note: stuels 3 10 0

Note: to a Cubard 20s; and 6 chares 12s and 2 whels; and

Note: ould Caske 3 10 0

Note: to patuar and bras. and Iron pots and andears; tongs

Note: a Iron cettel 6 0 0

Note: to a bead pan 10s and several utensels 2 0 0

Note: to corne and heay 20lb to a plow chairs whels youckes

Note: axis howes 23 0 0

Note: to sleths bedall Ringes wiges a saddell a sled 2 0 0

Note: to a bill standing out 20 lb to shepes woull and cloth 21 18 0

Note: ___________

Note: 135 16 0

Note: halfe ye ferry boat & halfe the Cannoe 1 0 0

Note: ____________

Note: 136 16 0

Note: Taken by us

Note: Tristram Coffin

Note: Cutting Noyes


Note: The inventory was sworn to by Joshua Plummer, the

Note: executor Oct. 14, 1702.


Note: Mr. Plummer’s homestead was next occupied by his son Silvanus and remained in the family for many years.

Note: All of Mr. Plummer’s children were born in Newbury.

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Samuel Plummer's Timeline

Norfolk, England
April 20, 1647
Age 28
Newbury, Massachusetts, USA
February 8, 1649
Age 30
Newbury, Essex County, Massachusetts, United States
May 11, 1652
Age 33
Newbury, Massachusetts, USA
September 16, 1654
Age 35
Newbury, Essex County, Massachusetts Bay Colony
February 16, 1657
Age 38
Newbury, Massachusetts, USA
February 22, 1658
Age 39
Newbury, , Massachusetts, USA
August 7, 1660
Age 41
Newbury, Essex County, Massachusetts Bay Colony
October 10, 1662
Age 43
Newbury, Essex, Massachusetts, United States