Widow Isabel (MNU) & Son James Babson, Immigrants to MA, 1637, Part 1

Isabel (MNU) must have been a very spunky lady as she made the dangerous trip across the Atlantic Ocean to begin a new life in Massachusetts when she was about 60 years old.

Thomas Babson was born c1575 and was buried 28 December 1630, Wookey, Somerset, England. Isabel (MNU) was born c1577, undoubtedly in England, and married Thomas Babson c1605.

A new professionally done Babson genealogy, The Babson Genealogy, 1606-2017: Descendants of Thomas and Isabel Babson Who First Arrived in Salem, Massachusetts in 1637 by Alicia Crane Williams, FASG, for the Babson Historical Association, was published in 2017. Unfortunately, I don’t have access to it, so I am going out on a limb to publish what appears to be reliable abstracted information about the family in England.

Thomas and Isabel suffered a lot of heartache, as they buried most of their children at a young age. Lacking access to the Babson book, it is uncertain whether the children’s dates are birth or baptism, so I will use ‘born circa.’

Children: (All events in Wookey, Somerset, England unless noted)

  1. Rose, born c17 June 1606; buried 24 June 1606
  2. Joan, born c9 October 1608; died 25 May 1695, Gloucester, Essex, Massachusetts; married John Collins, before 1642. This couple lived in Gloucester, Essex, Massachusetts
  3. Richard, c6 September 1612. Richard accompanied James and their mother to Massachusetts, but reportedly returned to England
  4. Thomas, c27 October 1614; buried 4 January 1615
  5. Sarah, c31 December 1615
  6. Thomas, c14 February 1619
  7. James, c7 March 1622; died 21 December 1683, Gloucester, Essex, Massachusetts
  8. Agnes, c11 December 1625; died 10 May 1634, Wookey, Somerset, England

It is not known whether the impetus to emigrate came from Isabel or her sons, James and Richard, but the family packed up and settled first in Salem, Essex, Massachusetts, in 1637, but soon moved to nearby Gloucester, where Isabel and James remained.

I have no further information on Richard Babson, who is said to have gone back home to England. There is a Richard Babson who married Anna Savadge at St. Dunstan, Stepney, London, England on 19 December 1642. This may or may not be the same man.

Thomas Babson was buried at Wookey, Somerset, England on 28 December 1630.

Isabel survived her husband by many years, passing away on 6 April 1661 in Gloucester, Essex, Massachusetts. Her son, James, administered her estate.

Given that Richard returned to England, it is possible that Thomas and Isabel have descendants still in England. However, they certainly have American Babson descendants and probably further descendants through Joan (Babson) Collins.

Tomorrow, we’ll look at the family and life of James Babson in Massachusetts.


3 thoughts on “Widow Isabel (MNU) & Son James Babson, Immigrants to MA, 1637, Part 1”

  1. I certainly can’t imagine getting on a ship in that period at age 60 to start a new life in a foreign land. Curious about Richard who might have been in London…have you tried tracing his descendants to see if there’s any connection?

  2. At the moment I cautiously believe that the Richard Babson who married Anna Savadge is the son of Isabel
    I have found a record at the same church that a James Babson, a cooper, was married at the same church to a Sarah Hall

    By birthdate he turned out to be the son of James Babson who was a Cooper in Gloucester and Isabel’s grandson.

    This James and Dsarsn Zbabdon stayed in England but have not been located after their marriage

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