Case Study: Was the Maiden Name of Rebecca, Wife of John Spurr, William King and Isaac Davenport, BLACKMER? – Part 3

Part 3 of this case study brings us to the male grandchildren of immigrant William Blackmer to determine whether or not one of them could be or is the father of Rebecca (MNU) Spurr King Davenport (c1734-1802) of Dorchester, Suffolk, Massachusetts.

Dorchester Vital Records
Source: American Ancestors

William’s son, Peter, who married Elizabeth (MNU) and Sarah Edwards, 24 October 1711, provides six possibilities – John, Joseph, William, Peter, Stephen and Samuel.

William’s son, John, provides two more possibilities – William and John.

At face value, none of these grandsons stands out as a more likely candidate than the other since their birth years (1690-1710) make them all reasonable prospects for having a child born in the early-to-mid-1730s. Therefore, I need to pick them apart the slow way, person by person.

Let’s look at the children of John Blackmer first, since there are only two possibilities here.

First, William Blackmer was born 20 December 1708. He married Sarah Norcott of Marshfield, Plymouth, Massachusetts after intentions were filed on 23 July 1738. Some have confused him with Peter’s son, born in 1699 because their adult lives overlapped and both had wives named Sarah.

Rochester, Massachusetts Vital Records
Source: American Ancestors

Children, born in Wareham:

  1. Mary, born 4 October 1739
  2. Lydia, born 26 April 1741
  3. Sarah, born 12 February 1743; died 26 February 1743
  4. William, born 31 March 1744; died 30 April 1744
  5. Sarah, born 16 September 1745
  6. Ralph, born 30 July 1747; died 16 August 1747
  7. Experience, born 27 July 1748; died 11 September 1748
  8. John, born 17 March 1752; died 1 April 1752

Because William was almost 30 years old when he married Sarah Norcott, there is a possibility that he had an earlier marriage to a wife who died young, so I can’t rule him out entirely. If William married first about age 25, and a first wife died giving birth to a child, that child could have been born c1733-1737, which matches Rebecca’s estimated birth year range. This William will stay on the potential list for now.

John Blackmer’s other son, John, born 22 April 1710, married Sarah Holmes, 15 March 1731/32 in Plymouth, Plymouth, Massachusetts. This is a well documented line, as it ties into a Mayflower ancestor through one of their children. John died on 28 September 1794.

Rochester, Massachusetts Vital Records
Source: American Ancestors


  1. Branch, born 27 January 1732/33
  2. John, born 17 September 1734; died 13 December 1734
  3. Sarah, born 20 January 1735/36
  4. John, born 1 March 1737/38
  5. Susannah, born 13 March 1739/40
  6. Mercy, born 24 October 1742
  7. Jerusha, born 20 January 1744/45
  8. Betty, born 4 November 1746
  9. Experience, born 18 May 1750

As you can see, there is no room for Rebecca to fit in this family, so John and Sarah (Holmes) Blackmer definitely are NOT her parents.

Of John’s two sons, then, only William born c1708 remains a candidate.

Now for Peter’s six sons. Here things get a bit messier as families began to move around.

What is known about Peter’s six sons is this:

First – John, born 1690 – He apparently married twice. John Blackmer Jr. married (1) Mary Brickett, 5 March 1711/12 and (2) Sarah Norcott of Marshfield, after intentions were filed on 10 March 1725.

Rochester, Massachusetts Vital Records
Source: American Ancestors

Children of John and Mary, born in Rochester:

  1. Nathaniel, born 3 July 1712; married Rebekah Sampson, 22 May 1740, Duxbury, Plymouth, Massachusetts
  2. Elizabeth, born 12 March 1713/14
  3. Susannah, born 8 July 1716
  4. John, born 21 March 1718 – no further record found.
  5. Mary, born 8 March 1719

I found no children born to Sarah (Norcott) Blackmer, so John is not likely to be the father of Rebecca.

Second – Joseph, born 1687, married Marcy Sears of Yarmouth, 7 January 1724/25.

Rochester, Massachusetts Vital Records
Source: American Ancestors


  1. Willard, born 6 January 1725/26
  2. Betty, born 29 September 1732
  3. Peter, born 7 August 1735
  4. Hannah, born 7 August 1737

Although tight, Rebecca could fit as a child in this family. Joseph and Marcy are possible parents of Rebecca. It will take more searching to learn more about Joseph and Marcy Blackmer’s family.

Third – William, born 1699, married Sarah Holland, 14 March 1722/23 in Dorchester, Suffolk, Massachusetts.

Dorchester, Massachusetts Vital Records
Source: American Ancestors

Children, born in Rochester:

  1. Marcy/Mary, born 20 March 1724
  2. John, born 11 April 1725
  3. Lemuel, born 11 September 1726
  4. Sarah, born 10 February 1727
  5. Holland, born 5 August 1730
  6. Timothy, born 20 October 1732
  7. Huldah, born 6 January 1735/36

William and Sarah (Holland) Blackmer lived in the section of Rochester which was set off to create the town of Wareham. Sarah predeceased William, dying on 26 February 1743. William died just 14 months later on 30 April 1744.

In spite of the fact that William and Sarah had minor children, no probate or guardianship records have been found for this family. Note, too, that there is a birth gap from October 1732 to January 1736. While they might have lost a child, this fits the estimated birth year range for Rebecca. William and Sarah remain on the list as possible parents for Rebecca.

Fourth – Peter, born 1702; died after 28 August 1764 when he sold a 1/16 interest in a forge in Western (Warren), Massachusetts and probably before 1769 when his son, Peter, sold land to his brother Solomon, but was not called “Junior”; married Hannah Sears, 3 November 1725, Yarmouth, Plymouth, Massachusetts.

Children, first four born in Rochester and last two in Hardwick, :

  1. Roland, born 11 August 1726
  2. Peter, born 1 May 1728
  3. Solomon, born 4 May 1730
  4. Stephen, born February 1734/34
  5. Barnabas, born  21 September 1741
  6. Hannah, born 4 April 1744

With a birth gap from February 1734 to September 1741, it is possible that Peter Blackmer is the father of Rebecca. However, knowing that Peter removed to Worcester County, Massachusetts no later than 1740, it seems unlikely that he was the father of Rebecca.

Fifth – Stephen, born 1704 – Stephen sold several parcels of land in Plymouth County, but no deed mentions a wife. The last deed in which he appears is dated 1747 at which time he was residing in Freeport, Bristol, Massachusetts. Stephen married Abigail (MNU), who filed a petition with the Bristol County Clerk on 4 May 1779 to allow son Joseph Blackmer to administer the estate of her late husband. Some say Salisbury Blackmer is his son. This may be our Stephen, but more research is needed.

Stephen is a possible father of Rebecca, given that so little is known about his children.

Sixth – Samuel, born 1705 – had a deed dated 18 May 1736, but not filed until 28 February 1780, indicating that he had removed to Norwich, New London, Connecticut.

Samuel is a ? as a potential father for Rebecca. However, because he removed to Connecticut by 1746, I am going to assume that he is not her father.

However, I did discover that Samuel married Sarah Giddings, thanks to this Norwich, New London, Connecticut land deed:

Norwich, Connecticut Land Deed, 29 June 1750

There are now four prospective Blackmers remaining who could be Rebecca’s father.

As we move along, it’s become necessary to take closer, more in-depth looks at Peter’s sons – Joseph (b. 1697), William (b. 1699) and Stephen (b. 1704), along with John’s son, William (b. 1708).



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.