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details of their lives at that remote period are almost entirely lost.
1 Occasionally a record is found, which affords a glimpse at their occupations; a suit was brought in Essex county in 1655, by Conant, and another against Francis Johnson, for a quantity of beaver and otter, received by Johnson in 1634, the parties having previously been in partnership ; the following testimony is found in the case; Johnson wrote to Richard Foxwell of Blue Point, under date “Salem, February 12, 1635," that he had received his letter of December 8, by Mr. Richard Tucker, as also beaver and otter, &c. “George Taylor, sworn June 18, 1654, saith that about eighteen years since, I dwelling with Mr. Cleeves in Casco bay, Mr. Richard Tucker and I was going to Boston ward, and at Sako, we met with Mr. Richard Foxwell, he desired me and Mr. Tucker to carry a great packet of beaver and a great packet of otter for him to Mr. Francis Johnson, which we did deliver to him in the bay."* Richard Tucker's deposition is also preserved in the same case, taken before Edward Rishworth, July 1, 1654, in which he says that "about eighteen or twenty years since, Mr. Richard Foxwell delivered me in my boat, then bound for the Massachusetts, a great fardell of beaver and another of otter, value to the best of my remembrance seventy or eighty pounds sterling."
These facts give some indication of the employment of Tucker, and carry us back to 1634. Tucker continued a partner with Cleeves, in land at least, probably during their lives : we find no division between them, but on the contrary we find as late as 1662, that his consent was required to a conveyance of land upon the Neck, by Cleeves. He seems not to have taken an active part in the political affairs of the province; his name seldom occurring in the transactions of the day, while that of his more restless partner is continually presented. In 1653, he was living on Sagamore Creek, in Portsmouth, N. H. His wife's name was Margaret; she was living a widow at Portsmouth in 1681; in which year she made a conveyance to her grandson, Nicholas Hodge.t
In 1742, Michael Hodge, of Salisbury, Massachusetts, executed a deed to Phineas Jones of one hundred acres of land upon the neck, in which Hodge declares that about the year 1662, Richard Tucker sold to one Mr. Cad, of Boston, a tract of land on the Neck containing four hundred acres, extending from a point of rocks to Clay Cove, reserving one hundred acres on the upper part ; and stated that “he is the only representative, said Tucker now deceased hath." Tucker probably had a daughter who married a Hodge, from whom Nicholas and Michael descended. Phineas Jones's wife was a Hodge, from Newbury, and it is not improbable that she may have transmitted to her descendants, some of whom still live in town, the blood of one of the first occupants of this soil. The blood of Cleeves flows freely in a numerous race scattered over the State through his only daughter.
* I know nothing more of George Taylor than that he signed the submission to Massachusetts in 1658, and lived in Scarborough in 1681, aged seventy years.
| Registry of Deeds, Rockingham Co., N. H., by the favor of Joshua Coffin, an industrious and faithful antiquary.
In 1636, Cleeves went to England and procured of Gorges, • who had acquired a title to the province of Maine, then called the province of New Somersetshire, a deed to himself and Tucker of a large tract in Falmouth, including the Neck on which they had settled. This deed was dated January 27, 1637, and was in the form of a lease for two thousand years : it conveyed, in consideration of one hundred pounds sterling, and an annual quit rent, the following described tract, “ beginning at the furthermost point of a neck of land called by the Indians Machegonne,' and now and forever from henceforth to be called or known by the name of Stogummor, and so along the same westerly as it tendeth to the first falls of a little river issuing out of a very small pond, and from thence over land to the falls of Pesumsca, being the first falls in that river upon a strait line, containing by estimation from fall to fall, as aforesaid, near about an English mile, which together with the said neck of land that the said George Cleeves and the said Richard Tucker have planted for divers years already expired, is estimated in the whole to be one thousand five hundred acres or thereabouts, as also one island adjacent to said premises, and now in the tenor and occupation of said George Cleeves and
1 The point called Machegonne is now called Jordan's point. The appellation Stogummor* never obtained in practice. The proprietors were very fond of giving new names to places within their patents, but these seldom prevailed over the more familiar Indian titles. The old Indian name Casco continued to be used all the first century after the settlement, notwithstanding the town had received from Massachusetts the corporate name Falmouth, as early as 1658. The falls first mentioned in the description are probably those on the Capisick river, but the length of line to those on the Presumpscot is incorrectly stated, whether intentionally or not, I will not pretend to say; the distance is over four miles. I know of no other falls which will answer the description. The quantity of land is also very much under estimated. In a deed from Alexander Rigby, in 1643, of the same tract, the length of the rear line, and the number of acres are omitted.
*[Stogummor is an English word, and is probably the same as Stogumber, or Stokeomer, a town in Somersetshire, England. Gorges was fond of transferring to his new possessions the familiar names of his native country.]
Richard Tucker, commonly called or known by the name of Hogg Island.” Possession was given by Arthur Macworth by appointment of Gorges to Cleeves and Tucker, June 8, 1637.
Gorges also on the 25th of February, 1637, gave Cleeves a commission “under his hand and seal for the letting and settling all or any part of his lands or islands lying between the Cape Elizabeth and the entrance of Sagadahock river, and so up into the main land sixty miles.” By virtue of this commission, which is referred to in the deed, Cleeves, on the 28th of December of the same year, leased for sixty years to Michael Mitton, who married his only child Elizabeth, the island at the mouth of the harbor now called Peaks. In the deed it is declared that this was called Pond island; and is subsequently to be known by the name of Michael's island from Mitton; it was afterward successively called from the owners or occupants, Munjoy's, Palmer's, and Peak’s island.
This is the first time that the name of Mitton occurs in our history, and it is from thence inferred, that he came over with Cleeves on his last passage.* Cleeves arrived in the month of May, and brought with him a commission from Gorges to five or six persons, one of whom was Gov. Winthrop of Massachusetts, to govern his province of New-Somersetshire, between Cape Elizabeth and Sagadahock, and to oversee his servants and private affairs. This commission was declined by Gov.
1 York Records, vol. i. p. 140.
* [The name of Mitton became extinct here, by the death of Michael's only son, Nathaniel, who was killed by the Indians August 11, 1676, unmarried. The blood flows through a thousand channels from his five daughters who married two Bracketts, Clark, Andrews, Graves. The name still exists in Shropshire and Straffordshire, in England. In 1484, one Mitton was Sheriff of Shrewsbury. In the contest between Richmond and Richard III, he took an oath that Richmond should not enter Shrewsbury but over his belly. But when. Richmond, victorious, approached the city, he changed his mind, and in order to save his oath, it was agreed that he should lie down on his back, and that when Richmond entered the city, he should step over his body.)
2 Winthrop, vol. i. p. 231.
Winthrop, and does not appear to have been executed by any of the others but Cleeves; it is probably the one above referred to under which Cleeves alone acted. He also "brought a protection' under the privy signet for searching out the great lake of Iracoyce, and for the sole trade of beaver, and the planting of Long island, by articles of agreement between the Earl of Sterling, Viscount Canada, and him.”
These extensive commissions to our first settler, if they resulted in no profit, as they do not appear to have done, show at least that he succeeded in acquiring the confidence of the large landed proprietors in England, and prove him to have been a man of some enterprise and address.
After his lease to Mitton, Dec. 28, 1637, we hear nothing more of him until 1640, when he appears as a suiter in court; there is no doubt, however, that he remained upon his land here, cultivating it and bringing it under settlement. For it appears by his own declaration that from the time of his purchase until the commencement of his suit in 1640, Winter was continually disturbing him: he says that Winter "being moved with envy and for some other sinister cause, hath now for these three · years past, and still doth unjustly pretend an interest and there
upon hath and still doth interrupt me to my great hindrance, .thereby seeking my ruin and utter overthrow." These actions were brought in Cleeves's name alone, but for what reason, we are not able to ascertain; the deed from Gorges was made to him and Tucker jointly, and so was the deed of the same tract which he procured of Alexander Rigby, in 1643, after he became the proprietor of the plough patent. They were also living together in the same house at this time, as is apparent from the description in Rigby's deed, as follows, “beginning at
1 Winthrop, vol. i. p. 231.
2 Sir Wm. Alexander was created Viscount Canada and Earl of Sterling in 1633.
3 York Records, vol. i. p. 94.
the said point of land called Machegone,' and from thence going westward along the side of Casco bay unto a place where the next river, running near to the now dwelling-house of the said George Cleeves and Richard Tucker, falleth into Casco
While Winter was pursuing his commercial speculations on the Spurwink, and Cleeves and Tucker were enlarging their borders on the north side of Casco river, another settlement was set on foot within the limits of Falmouth, at the mouth of Presumpscot river. The head of this enterprise was Arthur Macworth. He must have commenced his undertaking as early as 1632, for we find by a deed to him from Richard Vines in 1635, that he is described as having been in possession there many years; which could hardly be said of a shorter term than we have supposed. The deed is as follows,
leaving out the formal parts: “This indenture, made March 30, • in the eleventh year of Charles 1., between Richard Vines of
Saco, Gent., for and in behalf of Sir Ferdinando Gorges Knight, by authority from him bearing date Sept. 10, 1634, on the one part, and Arthur Macworth of Casco bay, Gent., on the other part, witnesseth, that said Vines doth give, grant, &c., to said Macworth, all that tract of land lying in Casco bay on the north-east side of the river Pesumsca, which now and for many years is and hath been in possession of said Macworth, being at the entrance of said river, where his house now standeth, upon
1 It will be perceived that this name is spelt differently in almost every deed, the natives probably never reduced it to writing, and it was spelt by the Europeans as the sound caught the ear. We find it written Machegony, Machegonny, Machegonne, and Machegone.
2 This is the only instance in which I find Gorges, or any under him, exercising any right over the soil in this section of the State until after 1635, when he acquired a separate title from the council of Plymouth.
3 The Presumpscot river has also been called Presumsca, Presumskeak, and Presumskeag. Sullivan supposes the original name to have terminated in eag, which in the Indian language signifies land, and which with a prefix of particular signification, forms many aboriginal terms, as Naumkeag, Penobskeag, &c.