George Fry or Frye is one of my 9X great grandparents who settled early in Massachusetts, but lived in areas where records are less than complete.
It is thought that George was born c1618, possibly in Combe St. Nicholas, Somersetshire, England and he died between 26 July 1676, when he wrote his will and 30 November 1676, when it was recorded in the Suffolk County court proceedings.
George arrived in New England with William Torrey in 1640 and he was living in Weymouth, Massachusetts when he married Mrs. Mary Brandon, widow of William Brandon, sometimes between 1647 and 1650.
Will of George Frye 1676
Reading 17th century handwriting isn’t one of my strong points. I missed a fair number of these words, but not the names of any of the heirs. I guess others weren’t any more successful, as I wasn’t able to find a full transcription of this will anywhere online.
In the name of god Amen the twenty and Sixth of July 1676
I George Fry of Weymouth weaver In the massachusetts Colony
in New england: being subject to many distempers bodyly; yet of
a good sound and perfect memory: and of a disposing mind
blessed be god a and knowing that all men must Dye and our
I doe therefore make and ordayne this my Last
will and testament in manner and form as follows—
First I bequeath my Soule to god; in and through the previous
blood and merits of and perfect obedience of my Lord and
Saviour Jesus christ: by whom of his (?) grace and mercy
I (?) and hope to obtaine Salvation and Eternal (?) — and also
my body to the Earth there to be interred in a descent manner
in hope of a Joyful resurrection &tc and fourthing? that liffe estat
that the Lord hath given and Lent me I the said George
FFry do dispose of it as foloweth — viz my mind and will is
that all my Just debts (while?) I doe or that our at the day of my
death and my funerall charges be in convenient time, paid &
discharged & for the residue of my Estate: I doe give and bequeath as followeth.
Item I give unto my Daughter in law mary Smith wife
unto James Smith Senior five pounds of my houshold goods or
Else m other goods (?) to bee paid first out of my Estate
and as for what: (?) I give to my Daughter Ruth Torry
and to her Son James Smith one third part of itt —
Item. I also give unto my daughter Naomy Yeales and to her heires one
third part more of my Estate: I also give and bequeath unto
my daughter Bathiah Reed and to her heires the other third part
of my Estate: and that this my last will and testament may bee
duly and faithfuly performed I do make (?) ordaine james Smith Senior of weymouth & Tim Yearles of boston my
lawfull Executors I (see?) that this my will be duly performed (????)
my hand that day and date abouve (??)
How many children did George Frye have? That point seems to be open for debate. I have seen statements that Mary Brandon had four Brandon children, that she and George had four children and that they had two children together.
It seems from George’s will that he definitely had three daughters – Ruth, who apparently married (1) James Smith and (2) Jonathan Torrey, Naomi, who married Timothy Yeales of Boston, and Bethiah, who married John Reed.
I am thinking that Mary, who was named first as the wife of James Smith Senior, might have been his stepdaughter as she received three pounds out of the household goods, while the other three daughters each received 1/3 of the estate.
As no wife was named, Mary (MNU) Brandon predeceased her second husband, George Frye. George Frye supposedly had a first wife, name unknown, but if they had any surviving children together, it isn’t evident from his will.
- Ruth, born c1650; died 28 April 1724, about 74 years old; Weymouth, Suffolk, Massachusetts: married (1) Joshua Smith (2) Jonathan Torrey, by 1676
- Naomi, born c1652; died after 30 November 1676; married Timothy Yeales, c1673
- Bethiah, born c1653; died 29 October 1730, Dighton, Bristol, Massachusetts; married John Reed
If anyone can shed more light on Mary Smith, wife of James Smith Sr., please leave a comment!
My line of descent:
- George Frye & Mary (MNU) Brandon
- Ruth Fry & Jonathan Torrey
- Mary Torrey & James Norton
- Rachel Norton & Joseph Coleman
- Joseph Coleman & Ruth Spur
- Thomas Coleman & Mary Elizabeth Astle
- William Coleman & Sarah Moriah Crouse
- Hartwell Thomas Coleman & Anna Elisabeth Jensen
- Hazel Ethel Coleman & Vernon Tarbox Adams
- Doris Priscilla Adams & George Michael Sabo
- Linda Anne Sabo Stufflebean – me!