Joseph Tower & Judith Briggs, Attleboro, MA, 1700s

Joseph Tower was baptized on 13 September 1720, Attleboro, Bristol, Massachusetts, the son of Benjamin Tower and Deborah Whipple.

He married Judith Briggs on 9 April 1743, also in Attleboro. She was born c1722, the daughter of Nathaniel Briggs and Judith Guild.

This family established the Tower family as Pre-Loyalists who settled in (then) Nova Scotia in 1761. Sadly, Joseph died at sea and never made it to their new home.

Little else is known about Judith, except that she may have died c1790 in the area of Nova Scotia that became the province of New Brunswick, Canada, but was alive and mentioned in her father’s 1773 and called Judith Phinney.

Another fun family fact is that my cousins and I are descended from the Hicks and Thornton families, also from Cumberland, and who also became Pre-Loyalists c1761. It is likely that the Hicks and Thornton families knew my cousins’ Tower families back in Rhode Island. However, they went on to settle in different counties in New Brunswick, Canada.

Children (All born Cumberland, Providence, Rhode Island):

  1. Benjamin, born 22 September 1744; died July 1804, New Brunswick, Canada; married Anne Finney, 1 May 1766, Sackville, Westmorland, New Brunswick, Canada
  2. Joseph, born 28 April 1746; died 6 September 1822, Rutland County, Vermont; married Eleanor Mason, 18 May 1768, Rutland County, Vermont
  3. Nathaniel, born 28 June 1748; married Lucy Tingley, 10 June 1774, Attleboro, Bristol, Massachusetts
  4. Joshua, born 30 June 1750; died 8 November 1753, Cumberland, Providence, Rhode Island
  5. Lucy, born 13 October 1752; died 5 January 1822, Sackville, Westmorland, New Brunswick, Canada; married Gideon Smith, 18 October 1770, Sackville, Westmorland, New Brunswick, Canada
  6. William, born 6 March 1755; died c1783; no further record
  7. Nancy, born c1757; married Gershom Maxwell, 19 January 1778, Sackville, Westmorland, New Brunswick, Canada

Judith Briggs remarried not long after arriving in Canada. Interestingly, her second marriage was to the father-in-law of her son, Benjamin, who married Anne Phinney/Finney. Her second husband was Nathaniel Phinney, whom she may have known in Rhode Island, as he was born 3 January 1720 in Swansea, Bristol, Rhode Island. It was the second marriage for Nathaniel, too. They were the parents of one daughter, Mary, born 7 April 1763 in Dorchester, Westmorland, New Brunswick, Canada. Mary married Daniel Fletcher on 7 May 1782, also in Dorchester, and died there at the young age of 46 years old on 5 September 1809.

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