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Early Families of Roxbury, Massachusetts

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  • John Bowen (1662 - 1718)
    One of the first 39 landholders in Woodstock. John Bowen Male 1 September 1662–24 November 1718 • Brief Life History of John When John Bowen was born on 1 September 1662, in Roxbury, Suffolk, M...
  • Joanna Lyon (1685 - 1721)
  • Maria Lyon (c.1675 - 1704)
    Mariah Kenrick Lyon BIRTH 28 Jan 1675 Newton, Middlesex County, Massachusetts, USA DEATH 5 Apr 1704 (aged 29) Roxbury, Suffolk County, Massachusetts, USA BURIAL Burial Details Unknown MEMORIAL ...
  • Abigail Curtis (1731 - 1773)
  • Sarah Sever (1659 - 1708)

This will be an umbrella project to pinpoint the families who were early settlers of Roxbury, Massachusetts. Some of these already have their own projects, e.g., Captain John Johnson and Edward Riggs.

It was said that the best people settled in Roxbury.
They were people of substance, many of them farmers, none being 'of the poorer sort.' They struck root in the soil immediately and were enterprising, industrious and frugal.


Concerning the early settlers of Roxbury, Francis S. Drake says: "They were people of substance, many of them farmers, none being 'of the poorer sort.' They struck root in the soil immediately and were enterprising, industrious and frugal."

The principal founder of the town was William Pynchon, who was one of the assistant magistrates that came over with Winthrop. The town was incorporated on September 28, 1630, only three weeks after the incorporation of Dorchester. Originally the name was spelled "Rocksbury," and Barber, in his Historical Collections, says: "A great part of this town is rocky land; hence the name of Rocksbury." Joseph Warren, who fell at the battle of Bunker Hill, was born in Roxbury in 1740. Four days before his death he received a commission as major-general in the Continental army. William Heath, another major general, was also a native of Roxbury. After the organization of Norfolk County, he was appointed probate judge, which office he held until his death in 1814. By an act of the Legislature, approved on January 5, 1868, Roxbury was annexed to and became a part of the City of Boston.

Drake says: "Though without a printing-press, Roxbury has led the van of independent thought, three of her most eminent citizens, by their protests against superstition, and their advocacy of political or religions reforms, having had their writings condemned to the flames by the colonial authorities. She Is the mother of towns, as many as fifteen prosperous New England communities, Including the flourishing cities of Springfield and Worcester, having been founded or largely settled by her citizens. She can fairly claim to be the banner town of the Revolutionary War, furnishing to it three companies of minute-men at Lexington, one of which was the first that was raised for the defence of American liberty, and having also given birth to three of the generals of the Revolutionary army. She played a prominent part in the siege of Boston, and was greatly Injured both by friend and foe. No less than ten of the governors of Massachusetts have been natives or residents of Roxbury. But while this is a record of which she may be justly proud, It is yet little to her credit that one must look elsewhere than within her confines, for adequate mementos of John Eliot and Joseph Warren. In the nomenclature or her streets she has done well to remember her founder and principal citizens, but she owes It to herself to perpetuate In the same manner the no less deserving names of Deulson, Parke, Bowles, Brewer, Craft, Lamb, Johnson, Dell, Morrill, Bugby, Payson, Graves, and Newell."

The inhabitants prided themselves on the raising of fine apples, pears and other small fruits. The Williams apple and the "Roxbury Russeting" originated here. There were several grist-mills in the town, also a fulling-mill, and the tanning and dressing of leather was a valuable industry.

The early settlers were men of substance and intelligence. The town possessed great natural advantages and was chosen as a place of residence by some of the prominent people of Boston. Nine of the early governors resided here. The Revolutionary records of Roxbury and its historic associations are also of much interest.

Old Roxbury extended eight miles from east to west, and two miles from north to south. It included West Roxbury, Jamaica Plain and a part of Brookline. Stony River took its rise in Muddy Pond and flowed across the town into Shallow Bay (Back Bay). Smelt Brook, which was much prized for its pure water, ran at the west of the ridge at Tommy's Rock, then across Washington Street and Guild Row, and "lost itself in the marshes" to the north of the town. Farther to the west Muddy River ran from Jamaica Pond in a tortuous course and emptied into Shallow Bay. The whole length of the river may now be seen as a part of the beautiful park system of Boston (River Way).

The founding of a church was the first and strongest bond of union among the early settlers; so we find that in 1632 the church in Roxbury, having grown sufficiently large to separate from that in Dorchester, started for itself, with Mr. Thomas Welde as senior pastor, and John Eliot as "teacher," or assistant pastor. Eliot came into full charge in 1641, having for his colleagues first, Samuel Danforth, and second, Nathaniel Walter. "The Roxbury ministry was noted for its great ability, eloquence, learning and piety."

As the Church was the centre of religious and social life, so the meeting house was the centre around which the little town was built. For mutual protection all houses were by law to be within half a mile of the meeting house. We find therefore the places of early historic interest near "Meeting House Hill," sometimes Tory Hill, and now Eliot Square. Here on the present site of the "First Church in Roxbury" was built in 1632 the little meeting house where John Eliot, the Apostle to the Indians, preached for nearly sixty years. It had a thatched roof, was unplastered, and had neither gallery, pew nor spire. The present building is the fifth erected here. The one standing during the Revolution was a constant target for the British cannon and was pierced through in many places. During the siege of Boston it was used as a signal station. The vacant land in front of the meeting house, then called Roxbury Common, was the grand parade ground for the troops quartered near by, and was the place where the people came together on important occasions. Here the forces gathered on the alarm from Lexington in 1775. A number of memorial tablets have been placed in the present church.


The territory comprising West Roxbury was originally known as "Jamaica End and Spring Street." In 1712 it became the Second Parish of Roxbury. During the next century several efforts were made to have the parish set off as a separate town, but all resulted in failure. In 1769 Jamaica Plain was organized as the Third Parish. In June, 1777, the Second and Third parishes joined in a petition to the General Court asking to be set off as a district to be called "Washington," but the Court took no action upon the petition. Finally, through the exertions of Arthur W. Austin and other influential citizens, who employed Rufus Choate to present their claims to the General Court, an act was passed on May 24, 1851, incorporating the Town of West Roxbury. The event was celebrated on the evening of June 3, 1851, by the firing of cannon, a display of fireworks, etc.

West Roxbury was the second town to be incorporated in Norfolk County after the latter was organized in 1793, Canton having been established in 1797, four years after the erection of the county. The town remained a part of Norfolk County until January 5, 1874, when the Legislature passed an act annexing it to the City of Boston.

Alcock Family

Arrived on the Arbella in the Winthrop Fleet, 1630.

Bridge Family

Arrived in Roxbury around 1637

Edward Bridge and wife Mary arrived in Roxbury around 1637. He became a Freeman in 1639. Their children were: Mary b. 1637 in Roxbury, married Samuel Gay; Thomas b. 1639 in Roxbury not named in his father's will; John b. 1640 in Roxbury, married Prudence Robinson. "John Bridge, died of ye Winde Collick and was buried the day following. His body was opend, he had sundry small holes in his stomak & bowels & one hole in his stomak yt a man's fist might passe through, wch is thought was rent wth vyolent straining to vomit, the night before he dyed, for the watchers observed yt something seemed to rend wthin him, and he saide of it I am a dead man."

Cheney Family

William CHENEY - b. about 1604, England; d. Jun. 30, 1667, Roxbury, MA. His will was dated Apr. 30, 1667 and proved Jul. 30, 1667. Although some suggestions have been made, there has been no evidence found for the CHENEY ancestry in England. Resided at Roxbury before 1640, owning 24 1/5 acres of land; freeman 1666; militia member 1647; constable; selectman 1656-7. He was a founder of the Roxbury Free School in 1664. Married about 1625, England.

Davis Family

Dudley Family

Arrived on the Arbella in the Winthrop Fleet, 1630. Thomas Dudley came over in 1630 as Deputy Governor and afterward settled in Roxbury. He was a man of strong and determined character, was four times Governor, and thirteen times Deputy Governor. His son Joseph Dudley filled many offices of honor and trust and was Governor of Massachusetts from 1702 to1715. Paul Dudley, son of Governor Joseph Dudley, was a Grand Chief Justice whose career was one of dignity and power. He erected a number of milestones in Roxbury.

Dudley Street was originally laid out from what is now Guild Row to Eustis Street and was named for the Dudley family. The Dudley Estate extended west nearly to the Meeting House, the boundary being Smelt Brook. The Dudley mansion stood opposite Guild Row. There lived Governors Thomas and Joseph Dudley and Chief Justice Paul Dudley. In 1810 Colonel Joseph Dudley gave a portion of his land as a site for a Town House. A town meeting was first held there in 1811. It was afterward known as City Hall, and was taken down in 1873 to make room for the Dudley School building. The first Universalist Church, where Hosea Ballou, 2d, once preached, was afterward built on the site of the Dudley House. Kenilworth Street, just opposite, was named for the estate of the Dudleys in England.

Eliot Family

Griggs Family

Thomas Griggs arrived in Roxbury in 1638. He is first found in a list of inhabitants at Roxbury in 1638, owning two parcels at Muddy River next to Thomas Ruggles.

Heath Family

The children of Mary Heath Johnson (deceased) arrived in 1630 on the Arbella.

Mary's brother, William Heath, arrived in 1632 on the Lyon.

The Winthrop Fleet (Robert Charles Anderson 2012) page 419 cites Great Migration 2:3:299-302 and states that Isaac Heath (arrived 1635 to Roxbury) was the brother of Mary Heath Johnson and of William Heath (arrived 1632 to Roxbury).

Johnson Family

Arrived on the Arbella in the Winthrop Fleet, 1630. Captain John Johnson was born between 1588 and 1592 in Ware, Herts, Kent, England. He died on 30 Sept 1659 in Roxbury, Suffolk, Massachusetts. He was one of the founders of the town and church of Roxbury and, with his sons Issac and Humphrey, was an original donor to the Free School in Roxbury. John Johnson, his wife Margery, and six children by his first wife, Mary Heath Johnson, left London in the ship Arbella on April 6, 1630 and were among 80 families in the Winthrop Fleet. John arrived in New England with the Winthrop fleet at Salem on 22 June 1630. He settled at Roxbury, Massachusetts, and was made a freeman on 18 May 1631. He subsequently served the town and colony in many capacities, including Constable (first on 19 October 1630), Surveyor General, Town Clerk, Deputy to the House of Deputies, and Clerk of the Military Company of Massachusetts. The position as Surveyor General of Arms and Ammunitions of the Colonies made Capt. Johnson responsible for the acquisition, maintenance and distribution of the primary means of protection.

His son, Captain Isaac Johnson, died at the Great Swamp Fight in Naragansett, Rhode Island in 1675, leading a number of Roxbury men against the Indians in King Philip's War (see related project on this war).

Pierpoint Family

Riggs Family

Edward Riggs, the head of the family in this country, was born about 1590, in England, and probably in Lincolnshire or Yorkshire, for it is understood the name is still to be found in that region. There have been many wild stories told about the origin of the family in this country—" the three brothers that came from Wales," etc., that we will not pretend to controvert, except by simply suggesting what is known historically. He landed in Boston, early in the summer of 1633, with his family, consisting of his wife Elizabeth, two sons, and four daughters. These children must have been young people pretty well grown, for his oldest son was married two years after arrival. 'They were among the very early settlers in Roxbury, then a suburb but now part of the city of Boston.' It was said that the best people settled in Roxbury. Like all immigrants, they had their full share of trials and sorrows. The first death recorded in the old books of Roxbury was that of Lydia Riggs, daughter of Edward, in August, 1633. In May, 1634, another daughter, Elizabeth, died, and in October of the same year the son John. August, 1635, the wife and mother, Elizabeth, died. Sometime after this Edward took a second wife, but there were no children from this union. She was also named Elizabeth, and all we know of her history is that she died 1669. It is wholly evident that Edward was a Puritan in belief and life, for in 1634 he was made a freeman, which means a voter, and the first step to that privilege was to be a member of the church. On a loose leaf found in the ancient transcript there is an enumeration of the inhabitants of Roxbury, made sometime between the years 1638 and 1640, in which Edward's family consisted of four persons, and it is not violent to assume that they were himself, his wife, and two daughters, who afterward became Mrs. Allen and Mrs. Twitchell. From his will dated September 2, 1670, it appears that only three lines of descent survived him, and that all his children were dead except Mary Twitchell. His daughter, Mrs. Allen, left a daughter, Elizabeth Allen, then of age and a legatee. Of the children of Mrs. Twitchell only Joseph and Mary are named, and they, as well as others not named, appear to have been minors. Mrs. Twitchell was the principal legatee. His first bequest is "that to my daughter-in-law, my sonne Edward Rigges, his wife," and "to my four grandchildren, my sonne Edward Rigges' children." It will be noticed that none of these is named, and as I could find only three children of the second Edward for a long time, there was some doubt as to whether Edward of Derby, Conn., and Newark, N. J., was the son of the testator. At last I found the fourth child, Samuel of Derby. The will furnishes reasonable evidence that the testator had personal knowledge of and affection for his daughter-in-law, and that she and her children then lived at a distance remote from Roxbury. It is also evident that he knew the widow and children of his " sonne Edward " were not in needy circumstances, or he would not have assumed the possibility of their not claiming the legacies he left to them. As a quiet, Christian man, his long life came to a close 1672, leaving a good name as the inheritance of the thousands descended from him.

Ruggles Family

[from Laurel Logan]

Arrived on the Arbella in the Winthrop Fleet, 1630. The first Americans in the Ruggles family are John Ruggles, his wife Barbara Bridge and their son John. They were also accompanied by John's elder brother Thomas and his family. Many Internet sites have John and Thomas's parents as Thomas Ruggles and Margaret Dandridge (the elder Thomas was supposedly born about 1558 in Sudbury, Suffolk, England but later moved his family to Essex). These same sites back Thomas up four more generations to Rogyll Ruggles born about 1444 in England. We're not sure how valid that information is, but we present it here since so many others seem to be taking this as fact. John and his family arrive in the New World in 1635 aboard the ship Hopewell and settle in Roxbury, Massachusetts where he worked as a shoemaker. In the records of the first church of Roxbury are the following entries from Rev. John Eliot: "John Ruggles, he came to New England in the yeare 1635, and soon after his coming joined to the church ; he was a lively christian, known to many of the church in old England, where many' of the church injoyed society together; he brought his first born, John Ruggles, with him to N. E., and his second son. was still-borne in the 11th mo., 1636, of which his wife died." "Also, Barbara Ruggles, the wife of John Ruggles ;. she .was a Godly Christian woman, and joined to the church with her husband, she dyed the 11th mo., 1636." John remarried a maid servant, Margaret Hammond, who had arrived in New England in 1632. Several sites list the couple as having a daughter, Dorcas. John Ruggles died in October 1663. Our story continues with his son, John, who was only two when he came to America. He becamed a person of some importance to Roxbury Puritan community. He often served as a selectman and was a trustee of the "Roxbury Free School." Several sites refer to the younger John as Rev. John Ruggles. It is known that he took an active role in purchasing Indian territory in Connecticut for his community. He was one of four men (which included his cousin Samuel Ruggles, John Curtis and Isaac Morris) who traveled with Indian guides to scout land owned by the Mashamoquet Indians which would eventually become the Connecticut town of Pomfret. Although the purchase was authorized in 1686, the land was not settled until 1707 and John himself remained in Roxbury where he died in 1713. John had four children with Mary Gibson, who he married in 1655 but who died in 1674. Our direct descendent is from John's second marriage to Sarah Dyer who had one child, Benjamin. Sarah died in 1687 and John remarried again a woman named Ruth, although that union did not produce any offspring.

Stowe Family

Arrived on the Elizabeth in 1634

The founder of the American line of the Stowes, John Stowe, with his wife and six children, emigrated to New England on the ship Elizabeth, arriving at Boston, according to the record of Rev. John Eliot, on the 17th of May 1634. He was admitted freeman Sept. 3, 1634, and was a proprietor at Roxbury, Representative to the General Court, two sessions, joined the Ancient and Honorable Artillery Co. Boston 1638, together with his son Thomas. He was early a teacher in the Roxbury Grammar school, and was granted eighty acres of land for transcribing the Roxbury public records.

The Stows came from Maidstone, Kent County, England, and settled in Roxbury, Mass. Among the first settlers of Massachusetts was John Stow, the Puritan of Roxbury. He was the grandfather of Stephen Stow, a Revolutionary War hero of Milford (the Martyr of Milford). Three of John Stow's descendants were presidents of Yale College and one is named among the founders of Yale.

'Where did the Roxbury Settlers Originate in England?

The Roxbury colonists were mostly from London and its vicinity, a few being from the West of England. They were people of substance, many of them farmers, none being "of the poorer sort." They struck root in the soil immediately, and were enterprising, industrious, and frugal. It is the testimony of an eye-witness, that "one might dwell there from year to year and not see a drunkard, hear an oath, or meet a beggar." Among them are names still borne in Roxbury by their descendants, such as Curtis, Crafts, Dudley, Griggs, Heath, Payson, Parker, Seaver, Weld, and Williams. Outside of Boston, no New England town can show such a roll of distinguished names as have illustrated her annals, unless Cambridge be an exception.

Nazeing, a rural village in Essex County, England, the home of many of the fathers of Roxbury, around which clustered the affections and remembrances of their youth, comprises the northwest corner of Waltham Half-hundred. It is on the river Lee, and is twenty miles cast from London. Its gable-fronted cottages, with low, thatched roofs and overhanging eaves, show that this quiet little village has undergone slight changes during the past three hundred years. The manor was given by Harold II to Waltham Abbey.

Its old parish church may be regarded as the parent of the First Church of Roxbury. It is situated on the side of a hill overlooking parts of Hertfordshire and Middlesex, bounded on the west by the river Lee, and on the cast and south by Waltham Abbey and Epping. Its parish records contain the familiar names of Eliot, Ruggles, Curtis, Heath, Payson, Peacock, Graves, and others, who, between the years 1631 and 1640, left their beloved homes and, for conscience' sake, braved the dangers of a long ocean voyage in the frail vessels of that period that they might aid in establishing a Christian commonwealth in the wilderness.

Roxbury Settlers and The Great Migration

At least 43 of the early settlers of Roxbury arrived on the Arbella in the Winthrop Fleet, 1630. They include: Johnson, Burr, Alcock, Lamb, Rawlins, Crafts, Dudley, Porter, Pratt, Goldwaithe, and Ruggles. In the year 1631 the ship "Lyon," William Piertie, master, left the shores of England with the first batch of Nazeing pilgrims on board. Eliot, the apostle, was there, with William Curtis and Sarah, his wife, Eliot's sister and their children, in company with the wife of Governor Winthrop. They were ten weeks on the water. In the summer of 1632 she once more left the Thames for Boston, having among her passengers William Heath, with his wife and children, and several other Nazeing worthies. Isaac, his elder brother, did not quit Nazeing until 1635. Early in 1633, John Graves, with his wife and five children, left their home for the shores of New England, and in 1635 they were followed by a large number of Nazeing Christians who came over in the "Hopewell." Others came later, but emigration from Old to New England ceased about 1640, when the popular cause there began to look hopeful.

At War with the Indians 1675 - 6 Philip's War

The war with the Indians in 1675-6, "Philip's War," as it is called, allusion to which is made by Eliot, was one of the severest trials New England was ever called upon to encounter. Of Roxbury's share in this contest, so destructive to the colonists, Eliot elsewhere says in his diary:

"John Dresser dyed in the war" and was there buryed. lie acquitted himself valiantly. We had many Maine in the warr, no towne for bigness lost more if any so many."

On July 6, 1675, a body of fifty-two praying Indians, Eliot's converts, marched from Boston for Mount Hope under the " intrepid " Capt. Isaac Johnson, of Roxbury, who afterward certified that the most of them acquitted themselves courageously and faithfully. He, with five other captains, was killed while storming the Narraganset stronghold when that fierce tribe was destroyed at the famous Fort Fight, Dec. 10, 1675. The roll of his company, which also embraces men from the adjacent towns, includes these of Roxbury —

  • Henry Bowen
  • Thom. Cheney
  • Isaac Morrick
  • Ariel Lamb
  • Tho. Baker
  • Samuel Gardiner
  • John Watson
  • John Scot
  • Onesiphorous Stanley
  • Nathaniel Wilson
  • John Corbin
  • John Newell
  • William Lincolne
  • Wm. Danforth
  • Joseph Goad
  • John Hubbard

Some who escaped from this sanguinary engagement were less fortunate in the Sudbury fight in the following April, in which Thos. Baker, Jr., Samuel Gardiner, John Roberts, Jr., Nathaniel Seaver, Thos. Hawley, Sr., William Cleaves, Joseph Pepper, John Sharpe, and Thomas Hopkins, of Roxbury, were slain.


Old Eustis Street Burying Ground

The old Eustis Street Burying Ground, corner of Eustis and Washington streets, is one of the oldest in New England. The first interment was made there in 1633. Here lie the remains of John Eliot and other early ministers of the town; Robert Calef; Governors Thomas and Joseph Dudley ; Chief Justice Paul Dudley, and the ancestors of many well-known Roxbury families. A tablet to the memory of General Greaton* has been placed here by the Massachusetts Society of the Sons of the American Revolution.


  • 1630: September 28, The first Puritan settlers arrive in Roxbury, led by William Pynchon (1589-1661), three weeks after the founding of Boston. The town is originally called "Rocksberry." The town is named after the unique rock outcroppings later called Roxbury puddinstone. All the other Roxburys in the United States have their origin in Roxbury, Massachusetts.
  • 1632: The first meetinghouse and burial ground are constructed in John Eliot Square. At this time, Washington, Roxbury, and Warren Streets and Dudley Square are laid out.
  • 1635: Reverend John Eliot (1604-1691) founds the Roxbury Latin School that later moves to West Roxbury in 1922. The school is the first preparatory school in the United States. Eliot is known as 'The Apostle of the Indians' for his efforts to christianize the Native Americans.
  • 1639: Roxbury is founded. It is connected to Boston by a thin strip of land along Washington Street. Originally, the town includes West Roxbury, Roslindale, Mission Hill, and Jamaica Plain. The town is a farming and stone mining community in a strategic military position since it guards the only route into Boston.
  • 1720: The Warren House, childhood home to Dr. John Warren (1753-1815), Professor of Anatomy and Surgery at Harvard, and his brother General Joseph Warren (1741-1775), of the Battle of Bunker Hill, is built.
  • 1746: The Roxbury Meetinghouse is constructed on Meeting House or Tory Hill. This hill is later used by General George Washington to drill troops during the Revolution.
  • 1747: The Shirley-Eustis House is built at 31 Shirley Street for William Shirley (1693-1771), the English Royal Governor of Massachusetts and commander of British forces in America. Later, Dr. William Eustis (1753-1825), a former student of Dr. Joseph Warren, buys the house and lives there while he is Governor of Massachusetts from 1823 to 1825. The house is designed by Peter Harrison who also designs King's Chapel, Boston.
  • 1750: The Dillaway-Thomas House is built at 183 Roxbury Street as a parsonage for the First Church of John Eliot Square. Charles Knapp Dillaway is the headmaster at the Roxbury Latin School when the first Japanese students come to America.
  • 1775: A fort is constructed on Roxbury Highlands during the Revolution.
  • 1800-1850: 1821: The Roxbury Universalist Church is founded on Guild Row.
  • 1828: Nahum Ward founds a candle making plant using horse tallow. In 1857, his son Francis Jackson Ward (1830-1912), moves the plant and horse graveyard to his family's land on Spectacle Island.
  • 1832: Joseph Sampson Waterman founds what today is the oldest funeral service business in Boston: J.S. Waterman & Sons-Eastman-Waring.
  • 1836: A Greek Revival mansion is built for First Parish Church deacon Alvah Kittredge Later, it is home to Nathaniel J. Bradlee and today is the site of the Roxbury Action Program.
  • 1839: Horse drawn streetcars provide service to Roxbury.
  • 1840s: The section of Roxbury along the Tidal Flats near the Shirley-Eustis House becomes a center for poor Irish Immigrants living in shanties along the flats. An anti-Irish Catholic riot leads to a the killing of an Irish immigrant on Dudley Street. St. Patrick's Parish Church is founded on the corner of Hampden and Dudley streets.
  • 1848: Simon Willard (1753-1848), considered by some to be the greatest clock maker in the United States dies. He is famous for tall encased clocks called Roxbury cases. Also, Mayor Dearborn dedicates Forest Hills Cemetery in the section of Roxbury by the same name. The Cemetery is the second is the United States laid out to be a place to walk and to contemplate nature. Over 150 years, it has become the final resting place for a number of notable Americans including e.e. cummings, Eugene O'Neil and Ruby Foo. The Cemetery has notable sculpture from the late 19th century by William Chester French.
  • 1851: Jamaica Plain and West Roxbury form their own town, withdrawing from the city of Roxbury.
  • 1856: Louis Prang (1824-1909), after fleeing Germany during the failed uprising of 1848, introduces chromolithography which allows oil paintings to be reproduced. In 1875, Prang prints the first Christmas card in the United States.
  • 1857: Henry and Jacob Pfaff found the H & J Pfaff Brewing Company on Pynchon Street (now Columbus Avenue). There, many German and later Irish workers brew lager beer.
  • 1867: Roxbury is annexed to Boston.


  1. Glimpses of early Roxbury By General Society of the Daughters of the Revolution. Massachusetts. Mary Warren Chapter, Roxbury
  2. History of Norfolk County, Massachusetts, 1622-1918, Volume 1 edited by Louis Atwood Cook, page 468.
  3. Genealogy of the Riggs family: with a number of cognate branches descended By John Hankins Wallace
  4. The history of Peter Parker and Sarah Ruggles of Roxbury, Mass , By John William Linzee
  5. Johnson
  6. The Roxbury Directory
  7. The town of Roxbury: its memorable persons and places, its history By Francis Samuel Drake
  8. History of Roxbury Boston Family History Collaborative
  9. John Johnson, Mary Ramsey - Clear Pond: The Reconstruction of a Life, By Roger Mitchell
  10. Sidewalk Memories YouTube introduction
  11. Roxbury, Dorchester and Mattapan The Way It Was Video - "Sidewalk Memories.
  12. The Roxbury Magazine