William Weeks, of Edgartown

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William Weeks

Also Known As: "Weekes"
Birthdate: (49)
Birthplace: Staines, Middlesex, England
Death: Died in Edgartown, Martha's Vineyard, Dukes County, Dominion of New England (Present Massachusetts)
Immediate Family:

Son of Robert Weckes and Sarah Weckes
Husband of Mary Weeks
Father of William Weeks, Jr.; Elizabeth Robinson; John Weeks; Samuel Weeks; Richard Weeks and 1 other
Brother of John Wickes

Occupation: Ship owner, trader, Tavern keeper
Managed by: Raymond Isaac Booth, III
Last Updated:

About William Weeks, of Edgartown

Do not confuse this William with William Weeks/Weekes who married Elizabeth Atherton.

[The following was compiled by Judy B. Anderson, 4485 S. 2025 W., Roy, Utah 84067]


The surname of Weeks, a corruption of the name Atwick alias Wickes, seems to surface in the parish of Staines, County of Middlesex, which is located about fifteen miles west of London. In 1638 in the will of a Richard Wickes -- dated August 4 and proved November 8 of that year -- he directed his executors "to pay to my son John Wickes now living in New England L200 at the feast of the birth of our Lord God next coming, . . ." He also left a bequest to another son: "To my son William L300, as follows, L30 in three months and the remainder in three years and he to have L10 paid him every half year in the meantime, and if he should die, or never come to claim it, then to be divided between my sons John and Robert and their children."(1)

There was a John Wickes living in Plymouth in 1637. He departed to Rhode Island in 1639, then moved with his friend, Samuel Gorton, to Warwick in 1643. He remained there until his death at the hands of the Indians during King Philip's war in November of 1675. He was sixty-six years of age.(2)

The will of Robert Wickes of Staines implies that William was either leaving England or already gone, and that it was in doubt whether he would return to claim his inheritance. Mr. Banks feels it logical that one brother followed the other to the new world and that since our William Weeks was a sea-faring man and did a packet business between Rhode Island and the Vineyard, there was a presumptive connection established for the two being brothers.(3) However, at the present time there is no proof for a connection.

William Weeks first appears on the Vineyard records in 1653,(4) in the area to be later known as Edgartown, but would have to have been there at an earlier date to have been able to participate in the division of land.

The first settlers of the town probably were assigned lots by the proprietors, one of the main ones being Gov. Thomas Mayhew. The land was sold to those desiring residence, but a transaction of concerning the distribution of those deeds does not exist. It is assumed that the first allotments of the common lands took place between 1646 and 1652, and included the "Divided Lots" located south of the town bordering on the Great Pond and Katama. These lots consisted of from ten to forty acres each.(5) It was decided that a fair division of the land would consist of 20 acres to a man, unless they already had property, then that amount would be less.

The first division of this "common" land took place 8 May 1653, and was to be meted out in twenty equal parts. The Weeks received lot eleven. Upon subsequent division of land between 1664 and 1669 Williams Weeks continued to receive a share.(6)

In 1655 he was granted land "near the pines in the middle of the island."(7) It is known that he was married at that time because of a deposition by Goodwife Weeks, dated Dec. 25, 1655, but the given name of his wife is unknown.(8) It may be that he brought his children with, or they may have been born after his move to Martha's Vineyard. Some time before 1658 his wife died.

William was serving in the position of constable in 1660, as he was notified by Gov. Thomas Mayhew "to levie upon the estate of John Doggett [Daggett] the elder, upon Martin's Vineyard(9) the sum of five thousand [pounds] upon the breach of order in purchasing lands."(10) Apparently Mr. Daggett had taken it upon himself to negotiate for lands rather than going through the proper channels, and as a result was given a hefty fine. He was unable to come up with such a large amount and appealed to the court at Plymouth. William's name was among those requesting part of the farm when Daggett could not afford to pay the fine. However, upon order of the Plymouth Court, Daggett maintained his title to the land.

His second marriage was thought to be to Mary Lynde, who was the widow of John Butler. She was born about 1629 in Dunstable, Bedford, England, and died after 1693 in Martha's Vineyard,

Massachusetts. Her parents were Thomas and Mary Lynde.(11) However, this has not been substantiated at the present time.

Some attribute the children to this second marriage, but since the children were born prior to 1658, it is doubtful this is the case.

As land was claimed and there came a need for expansion, the authorized persons would negotiate with the Indians, on behalf of the colony, to acquire additional property. The "Old Purchase" consisted of two large tracts of land within the town limits of Edgartown, the rights for which had been purchased from Tewantiquatick, and ran from Wintucket to the end of William Week's home lot.(12)

In May of 1653 a town representative purchased part of Ogissket Neck from the Indians and it became known as "The New Purchase." This parcel was not divided until 1673.(13)

The next division of land was the "Plain." It was the largest acquisition of land up to this time and was surveyed and divided by Richard Sarson, Thomas Bayes and Isaac Norton into forty lots. William Weeks received lot six.(14)

William's name appears on the town records for various actions, but the most notable was in 1667. He was making a trading trip from the Vineyard and had his vessel loaded with corn, pork, hides, tobacco, wheat, vegetables, etc. He was wrecked at Quick's Hole and the vessel was seized and looted by Indians of the Elizabeth Islands. Upon giving a deposition, he stated:

One Mondaye night the 18.9.1667 about 2 or 3 a clock in the morning, by reason of the violence of the wind, my anchrs remaining home, my vessell drove a shoare in the harbor at the west end of that Iland next to Quickshole. Myselfe and company then went to warme orselves at an Indian house, the Indians saied the vessell and the goods were theirs, wee answered noe, they had noe right to it, they sent to the Sackym & to the other Indians who all came together, and while they were consulting about the vessell and goods they bid us to goe to the other howse; wee answered noe, they need not turn us out of the howse wee did not hinder them; then the Indians went out of the howse to the next howse & wee went aboard, & about an hower & halfe after wee being returned to the howse the Indians came thither allso, and toll'd us they had determined all together wee should neither have or vessell or goods, they would take them. I desired my chest of them, some of them answered noe there was sum cloth in it & they would have it, I desired my weareing cloathes whch they graunted and some provisions to eate while wee were there wch they graunted. They tooke away a suite of cloathes from me, 2 pre of shooes, all my tooles, the sachim had my saw in his hand wch I would have had, but he woulld not gyve it to me, nor my axe. They tooke away a new Hatt and a new paire of shooes from my sonne: the partyculars lost are my vessell of 15 tunns wth all due furniture belonging to it, and a soresaile to spare, my Cables and anchors I desired of them but they woulld not gyve them unto mee, my vessell was not seene to be staved when we viewed hir at low water, onely the back of hir rudder broken off; my freight aboard was 42li Indian corns, fower barrels of pork, 4 hydes, 1 firkin of buter, 1 smale caske of suett about 40r, on barrell of tobacco, about 34 or 34li cotton wool, 26 bushells meale, 8 bushells of it wheate meale,the rest Rye of Indian meale, 1 bushell wheate, 1 bushell Rye, 2 bushells turnepps, one bushell of Inions, Red cloth 6 yards, 3 or 4 yards pemistone, My leade and lyne with divers other things out of my chest and vessell. Shooes, one poayre women's shooes, two Iron potts, 3 paire Chilldrens shooes, 2 paire new Russett shooes, 40l tallow, two gunns, a greene blankett, a woman's cloake from Goody Doggett, this is the truth of the case at present to or best remembrance.

This declaration above written was attested upon oathe by William Weexe the master of saied vessell, and by his son William and by thomas the Indian who was seaman in the vessell.

Goody Doggett testifies that the Indyans did take away & wtholld the vessell & goods from the master and shee did entreate them to lett him have his vessell againe but they would not, but they allso denied the meale and meate and fetcht it away, all these were taken uppon oathe 22 november 1667 upon the Vynyard. This is the Coppy of what is under oathe

Thomas Mayhew

Endorsed: "22 Novembr 1667 Declaracon of the Carriage of ye Indians about a vessell taken by them."(15)

Endorsed further down: "A declaration about a vessel of Will Weexes taken by indians at one of the Elyzabethes Isles: Nobre 1667.

His son, William Jr., accompanied him on this excursion, and both were rescued by John Dixey who told the Governor of New York about the incident. He, in turn, wrote to Governor Mayhnew to deal with the Indians and require restitution of the vessel and its stolen cargo.(16)

Although a resident of Martha's Vineyard prior to 1671, it wasn't until December 11th of that year that his lands were recorded on the town books. The following is a copy of his estate at that time:

The petickelers of the parcells of Land Granted unto William Weeks by the Inhabitance of Edgartown at the Great Harbour of Marthas Vinyard and Ordered to Be Recorded the Day above writen.

one whole Comonage of thirty seven Shears with all preveledges there unto Belonging as fish and whale: one house Lott of Twenty Poles Broad Bounded by Thomas Bayes on the South and Richard Sarson on the North Being Ten acres More or Less: to the Line Ten acres eleven Poles and a half Breadth Bounded by Thomas Bayes on the West Richard Sarson on the East: Land Bought of Peter Foulger one Neck Lying West to the Planting feild Being Eight acres More or Less: with one acre and a half of Meadow at Sanchacantackett one shear of Meadow; - one Shear at Feliz Neck: another Shear at Meachemus feild: one Shear at Quanomica: one Shear at Cracketuxett: One Devidant Lying at the Great Neck Being Twenty five acres more or Less Lying betwixt Thomas Peases and Mrs Blands: with one thach Lott ajoyning Part upon my said Devidant at the Neck: at Chapequideck one Lott of three acres More or Less Bounded by John Pease on the North and young Mr. Mayhew on the South: two acres of Meadow Lying on the South East Side of Chapequideok More or Less: one acre of Meadow on the EastSide of the Planting feild Lying Northward of Thomas Doggetts Be it More or Less: These all Granted By this Town and Purchased of Indians and one twenty fifth part. . . .(17)

He also had land at Homes Hole (18) which was not recorded until February 9, 1680. He had to have secured the property prior to that time, however, as he was appointed to a committee in Tisbury on January 16, 1678 to "view every man's lot and equalize it in the matter of swamp lands." (19) He may have been on the committee, with Isaac Chase and Thomas Mayhew, as an

impartial arbitrator. How he came into possession of these lands is not recorded. Since the six shares granted by Governor Mayhew had already been accounted for, it may be that additional land had been acquired by them and subdivided, and that Weeks obtained a portion of this. Existing records would lead credence to this assumption, as in 1681 mention of "the English lyne" is referred to, and in 1685 "the line which parts the English land from the Indian land," is mentioned.(20) In 1683 he sold one-sixth of the "two Southermost lots of land: 42 poles by the harbor extending to the fresh pond."(21) In 1685 he sold "one compleat half of one third part of the two southmost lots of land upon the Neck."(22) The English Line is thought to have run from Bass creek to the head of Tashmoo pond, and to have marked the southern boundary of the original grant to the six shareholders. All of this land eventually was purchased by Isaac Chase.(23)

Apparently he had also secured land in Falmouth, possibly for investment purposes as Joseph Hull bought property from Jacob Perkins in Falmouth, and it was noted that Jacob had bought that property from William Weeks, Sr. 31 Oct. 1677.(24)

Several suits against William indicate that he operated a tavern. He appeared in various business and litigation activities between 1684 and 1687. In 1688 he sold his real estate interests in Homes Hole to Isaac Chase. A final sale in December of that year seems to be his last transaction. Between that date and August 3, 1689 he died, as his widow, Mary, sold the home lot and he is referred to as being deceased.(25) Sons William and Richard challenged her right to sell the lands as they claimed ownership. They won proved their case and the court gave them possession of the property.

There is no record of a will or probation for William. His son, Samuel, had land in the Vineyard, but he sold out in 1688. So, with the death of William, the Weeks family name was no longer found on the island until 1710 when Joshua Weeks settled in Tisbury.(26)


  1. Charles Edward Banks. The History of Martha's Vineyard, Dukes Co., Massachusetts, Vol. II,, Dukes Co. Historical Society: 1966, pg. 118-119.
  2. Charles Edward Banks, pg. 119.
  3. Ibid.
  4. Banks, Charles Edward. The History of Martha's Vineyard. Dukes County Historical Soc.: Edgartown, 1966, pg. 26. The first known division of common land was made in 1653 and there were 20 proprietors to participate in the allotment, including William Weeks.
  5. History of Martha's Vineyard, Vol. II, pg. 25.
  6. History of Martha's Vineyard, Vol. II, pg. 26 – Edgartown Records, Vol. I, pg. 172; pg. 28 -- Edgartown Records, I, 156; pg. 30 --Edgartown Records, I, 147.
  7. Banks, pg. 120.
  8. Edwards, pg. 3.
  9. Martha's Vineyard, although Martin's Vineyard seems to be the earlier naming of the area.
  10. Charles Edward Banks, The History of Martha's Vineyard, "The Annals of Oak Bluffs", Vol. I, pg. 12 -- Edgartown Record, I, 130.
  11. Edwards, pg. 19 -- footnote.
  12. History of Martha's Vineyard, Vol. II, pg. 32.
  13. Banks, History of Martha's Vineyard -- Annals of Edgartown -- Vol. II, pg. 32.
  14. History of Martha's Vineyard, Vol., II, pg. 33.
  15. William Hopple Edwards, Genealogical & Ancestral Notes, Vol. 2 of Series I & Series I-A, Meridian, Conn., 1957, pg. Appendix E -- Excerpts from "Early History of Nashon Island" by Amelia Forbes Emerson -- pg. 202.
  16. Banks, pg. 121.
  17. Banks, The History of Martha's Vineyard - "Annals of Edgartown", pg. 121.
  18. "Hole" refers to a small inlet of water which would shelter the boats. "Homes" originally meant an old man. Literal meaning of the term "Homes Hole" would be old man's hole. It was until many years later that the name was referred to as "Holmes Hole" after a family who had settled in the area around 1670 - Annals of Tisbury -- pgs. 3-18 off the internet.
  19. Banks, pg. 121.
  20. History of Martha's Vineyard, Vol. II, pg. 16 -- Deed of Dukes Co., Mass, Bk. III, pg. 314.
  21. History of Martha's Vineyard, Vol. II, pg. 16 -- Deed of Dukes Co., Mass., Bk. I, pg. 78.
  22. History of Martha's Vineyard, Vol. II, pg. 16 -- Deed of Dukes Co., Mass, Bk. I, pg. 73.
  23. History of Martha's Vineyard, Vol. II, pg. 16.
  24. Genealogical Notes of Barnstable Families. . F. B. & F. P. Goss Publishers & Printers: Barnstable, Mass., pg. 2, Vol. II -- Revised by C. F. Swift 1979.
  25. Banks, pg. 122.
  26. Banks, pg. 122.


Do not confuse this William with William Weeks who married Mary Lynde (profile 1 | profile 2).

Born 1628/9

ID: I4882 Name: William WEEKS Sex: M Birth: 12 AUG 1660 in Dorchester, Suffolk County, Massachusetts _RIN: 550 _APPLIES_TO: DATE_AND_PLACE 1 Christening: 19 AUG 1660 Dorchester, Suffolk County, Massachusetts _RIN: 550 _APPLIES_TO: DATE_AND_PLACE 1 Death: 29 JUL 1703 in Rehoboth, Bristol County, Massachusetts _RIN: 550 _APPLIES_TO: DATE_AND_PLACE 1 _UID: 42FD02848445FB448AC3AC19D72D62BAFFA7 Note: His will was written 10 Dec 1677 and probated Feb 1678. This man apparently started or renewed the practice of calling months by their name rather than by the number. Savage mentions his daughter, Renew, that married Benjamin Carpenter.

Children Hannah WEEKS b: in Dorchester, Suffolk County, Massachusetts John WEEKS b: 23 FEB 1651/52 in Swansea, Bristol County, Massachusetts Elizabeth WEEKS b: 16 SEP 1653 in Swansea, Bristol County, Massachusetts Mary WEEKS b: 10 NOV 1656 in Swansea, Bristol County, Massachusetts William WEEKS b: 26 NOV 1658 in Swansea, Bristol County, Massachusetts Renew WEEKS b: 12 AUG 1660 in Swansea, Bristol County, Massachusetts Jane WEEKS b: 30 SEP 1662 in Swansea, Bristol County, Massachusetts George WEEKS b: ABT 2 OCT 1664 in Swansea, Bristol County, Massachusetts Sarah WEEKS b: 19 AUG 1666 in Swansea, Bristol County, Massachusetts Samuel WEEKS b: 25 JAN 1669/70 in Swansea, Bristol County, Massachusetts Submit WEEKS b: 3 FEB 1670/71 in Dorchester, Suffolk County, Massachusetts _RIN: 375 2 _RIN: 550 1 Change Date: 13 SEP 2006 at 16:18:36

Father: George WEEKS b: 23 FEB 1608/1609 in Salcombe Regis, Devonshire, England Mother: Jane CLAPP b: ABT 1600 in Salcombe Regis, Devonshire, England

Marriage 1 Elizabeth ATHERTON b: 28 SEP 1628 in Winwick, Lancashire, England Married: 1650 in Dorchester, Suffolk County, Massachusetts 1 Children

Renew WEEKS b: 12 AUG 1660 in Dorchester, Suffolk County, Massachusetts c: 19 AUG 1660 in Dorchester, Suffolk County, Massachusetts

Sources: Title: FamilySearch Pedigree Resource File Abbrev: FamilySearch Note: Weeks - Atherton - Carpenter Title: D. B. Robinson's Genealogy Author: D. B. (David) Robinson Abbrev: D. B. (David) Robinson Publication: ancestry.com Abbrev: D. B. Robinson's Genealogy Note: Winslow/Carpenter Line

ID: I67769 Name: William Weeks (Weekes) 1 2 3 Sex: M 4 5 Birth: ABT 1628 in Salcombe Regis, Devon, England 1 6 Death: 13 DEC 1677

Father: George Weeks (Weekes) b: ABT 1605 in Devon, England Mother: Jane Clapp b: ABT 1604 in Salcombe Regis, Devon, England

Marriage 1 Elizabeth (Catherine) Atherton c: 28 SEP 1628 in Lancashire, England Married: 1650 in probably Dorchester, Suffolk, Massachusetts 7 Children

John Weeks (Weekes) b: 23 Feb 1651/52 in probably Dorchester, Suffolk, Massachusetts
Richard Weeks b: 1653 in Massachusetts
Elizabeth Weeks b: 14 SEP 1653 in Dorchester, Suffolk, Massachusetts
William Weeks b: 20 AUG 1654
Mary Weeks b: 10 NOV 1656 in Dorchester, Suffolk, Massachusetts
Renew Weeks (Weekes) b: 12 AUG 1660 in Dorchester, Suffolk, Massachusetts
Jane Weeks b: 30 SEP 1662 in probably Dorchester, Suffolk, Massachusetts
George Weeks b: 2 OCT 1664 in Dorchester, Suffolk, Massachusetts
Sarah Weeks b: 19 AUG 1666 in probably Dorchester, Suffolk, Massachusetts
Hannah Weeks b: 13 SEP 1668
Samuel Weeks b: 1670
Submit Weeks b: 03 Feb 1671/72 in probably Dorchester, Suffolk, Massachusetts

Sources: Type: Book Author: Robert D Weeks Periodical: Genealogy of George Weeks Publication: L.J. Hardham Press, Newark NJ, 1885 Author: Robert D. Weeks Periodical: Genealogy of the Family of George Weekes of Dorchester Publication: LJ Hardham Press, Newark NJ, 1885 Type: Book Author: James Savage Periodical: A Genealogical Dictionary of the First Settlers of New England, Showing Three Generations of Those who came Before May, 1692, on the Basis of Farmer's Register Publication: Boston, Little, Brown and Company; reprinted by Higginson Book Co., Salem, MA, c1995 Repository: Lompoc, Pomona, Ventura Public Libraries Text: Vol II Type: Book Periodical: History of Rehoboth Carpenters Type: Gedcom File Title: Ellis-Padgett Family Roots Date: 2005-06-06 Location: Rootsweb.com Type: Gedcom File Title: 15353 Date: 29 APR 1999 Title: MyronC Gedcom file#452, Location: MyronC@gvn.net, Url: FTMW, Family Tree Makers for Windows Publication: 08/16/98, Original Date, 05/02/98 Text: 1628 Title: MyronC Gedcom file#452, Location: MyronC@gvn.net, Url: FTMW, Family Tree Makers for Windows Publication: 08/16/98, Original Date, 05/02/98


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William Weeks, of Edgartown's Timeline

Staines, Middlesex, England
Age 17
Barnstable, Cape Cod, Plymouth Colony
Age 20
Plymouth Colony
Age 23
Age 25
August 20, 1654
Age 26
Dorchester, Suffolk, Massachusetts
Age 27
Edgartown, Dukes County, Massachusetts
Age 29
Edgartown, Martha's Vineyard
December 13, 1677
Age 49
Edgartown, Martha's Vineyard, Dukes County, Dominion of New England (Present Massachusetts)