Sarah Mansfield Browne

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Sarah Mansfield Browne (Barsham)

Also Known As: "Sarah Mansfield Browne (Barsham)"
Birthdate: (47)
Birthplace: Watertown, Middlesex, Massachusetts
Death: between 1693 and 1709 (43-67)
Reading, Middlesex County, Massachusetts, United States
Immediate Family:

Daughter of William Barsham of Watertown and Annabella NN
Wife of Samuel Mansfield and John Brown, of Reading
Mother of Sarah Way; John Browne, Jr.; Mary Browne; Captain Nathaniel Browne and Stephen Browne
Sister of John Barsham; Hannah Spring; Joshua Barsham; Susanna Capen; Capt. Nathaniel Barsham and 3 others

Managed by: Private User
Last Updated:

About Sarah Mansfield Browne

vi SARAH, b. say 1646; m. (1) Lynn 3 March 1673/4 Samuel Mansfield; m. (2) Reading 14 November 1681 John Brown .


From the Great Migration project:

in a codicil of 15 April 1684 (William Barsham of Watertown) bequeathed to "my daughters Hannah Spring, Susanna Capen, Sarah Browne, Mary Bright and my son John Barsham to each of them twenty shillings apiece."

William Barsham refers to his daughter Sarah only as "Sarah Browne," and on this basis various Brown families have claimed her as the wife of some man with an otherwise unidentified wife Sarah. In Torrey's index "Sarah " is suggested as the wife of John Brown of Reading (as his second wife, the marriage taking place on 14 November 1681) and of William Brown of Salem and Marblehead (the marriage taking place by 1669).

When Sarah Barsham's brother Nathaniel made his will on 10 May 1716 he, like his father, referred unhelpfully to "my sister Brown," but also in his probate packet was the following deposition: William Bond, Jonas Bond and Hepzibah Bond do testify & say that we being all related to Capt. Nathanill Barsham and very conversant at his house both formerly and lately we do well remember that many of his relations who were sister's children lived with the said Capt. Barsham many years, some a longer, some a short time, as namely Abigail Spring, Susannah Spring, Andrew Mansfeild, Bethiah Mansfeild and Nathanill Brown .

The affiants were related to Elizabeth Bond, Nathaniel Barsham's wife, and the first two relations named were children of John and Hannah (Barsham) Spring. This document proves that the Sarah Barsham who married Samuel Mansfield in Lynn was this daughter of William Barsham, and that she married second a Brown, by whom she had a son Nathaniel. Samuel Mansfield died in 1679, and "the father of Samuel Mansfield, and the father of the wife, with the consent of the wife, chose and empowered Mr. Thomas Laughton Sr., Andrew Mansfield and Nathaniel Bersham to divide the estate" . The chronology eliminates William Brown of Salem and Marblehead as a candidate for Sarah's second husband, as that man was supposed to have married her by 1669, far too early.

The record of the second marriage of John Brown of Reading comes from the vital records sent to the county clerk for recording, and not from the town records. This entry gives the date of the marriage, 14 November 1681, but not the surname of the bride. John and Sarah Brown of Reading did have a son Nathaniel, born 22 April 1688, who in turn named one of his daughters Bethia, presumably for his elder half-sister . Reading and Lynn at that time shared a common boundary, and a number of close relatives of Samuel Mansfield lived in Reading in this same time period. These clues all add up to the conclusion that this John Brown was the second husband of Sarah Barsham.


  1. Torrey, New England Marriages Before 1700. "BROWN, John (-1714, ae 86) & 2/wf Sarah [BARSHAM]?; 14 Nov 1681; Reading {Watertown 17; Bailey: Early MA Mar. 3:80; Brown (#6) 6; Middlesex Court Rec. 1:481; TAG 30:16}"


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Sarah Mansfield Browne's Timeline

Watertown, Middlesex, Massachusetts
November 6, 1676
Age 30
Lynn, Essex, MA
December 2, 1682
Age 36
Reading, Middlesex County, Massachusetts, United States
September 23, 1685
Age 39
Reading, Middlesex County, Massachusetts, United States
April 22, 1688
Age 42
Reading, Middlesex County, Massachusetts, United States
May 21, 1693
Age 47
Reading, Middlesex County, Massachusetts, United States
Age 47
Reading, Middlesex County, Massachusetts, United States