This is part of a series about my New England colonial ancestors who arrived by during the Great Migration. If you have early Massachusetts ancestry, be sure to check out AmericanAncestors, as the Great Migration Study Project can be viewed there with a membership to the New England Historic Genealogical Society.
William & Elizabeth (MNU) Ballard, my 9X great grandparents, are two people about whom I know little compared to other ancestors. The three main reasons are: that the Ballard family English origins haven’t yet been identified, William died at the age of 36, only 4 years after settling in Massachusetts and, lastly, they had only three children and I’m descended from the only daughter.
William was aged 32 years when the family left London, England in 1635 on the James, so born c1603 in England. He married Elizabeth (MNU) c1632.
Without knowing William’s town of origin, it is impossible to say if he might have had a first wife. Many men of that era married around the age of 25. It is possible that there was a previous wife who might even have died giving birth. That was unfortunately not a rare event. Perhaps future research will uncover clues to this family’s English origins.
Note that there was a second William Ballard, unrelated to this man, who settled in Andover, Massachusetts. Both were about the same age and many online trees have confused and/or conflated these two men into one person.
Elizabeth married (2) William Knight, c1640 and (3) Allen Bread, 28 March 1656, Lynn, Essex, Massachusetts.
William Knight left a 1653 will and mentions his four children with “my last wife Elizabeth.” If she gave birth in quick succession after their marriage, say in 1641, 1643, 1645 and 1647 and she was about 42 when her youngest child was born, that would place her birth year around 1605.
William and Elizabeth Ballard were the parents of three known children:
1. Esther/Hester, born c1633, England; married Joseph Jenckes, before 1652. She was fined on 30 November of that year for wearing silver lace. Online data gives a death year of 1717 in Pawtucket, Rhode Island for both Esther and Joseph. Joseph’s will was proved in February 1717. Esther was named as executrix, but was unable to take on the responsibility, but it offers proof that she survived Joseph. Joseph Jenckes moved his family to Rhode Island, where he became one of the founders of Pawtucket.
2. John, born c1634, England; died 11 June 1725, Lynn, Essex, Massachusetts in his 92nd year; married Rebecca (MNU), before 1669.
3. Nathaniel, born c1636, Massachusetts; died before 9 April 1722, Lynn, Essex, Massachusetts; married Rebecca Hutson, 16 December 1662, Lynn, Essex, Massachusetts.
My line of descent:
- William Ballard & Elizabeth (MNU)
- Joseph Jenckes & Esther Ballard
- Sylvanus Scott & Joanna Jenckes
- John Wilkinson & Rebecca Scott
- Israel Thornton & Joanna Wilkinson
- Ira Hicks & Sarah Thornton
- Israel Hicks & Abigail Carlisle
- Charles Augustus Stewart & Elida Ann Hicks
- Charles Edwin Adams & Annie Maude Stuart
- Vernon Tarbox Adams & Hazel Ethel Coleman
- George Michael Sabo & Doris Priscilla Adams
- Linda Anne (Sabo) Stufflebean – Me!