David Thomson

Male 1592 - Bef 1627


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  • Name  David Thomson 
    Born  Dec 1592  Clerkenwell, London, Middlesex, England Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Gender  Male 
    Died  Bef May 1627  Thompson's Island, Boston Harbor, Massachusetts Find all individuals with events at this location 
    • Col. Amy (Descendants of David Thomson) gives date of death as December 1628, ae. 36. No source is given however. Saunders (Chapman-Thomson Allied family Lines) makes a statement that his death was "by drowning at his island in December 1627."
    Notes 
    • "David THOMSON" and "Amyes COLLE" were married in St. Andrews Church, Plymouth, England, 18 July 1613. He was an apothecary or merchant at Plymouth. Pope calls him "fishmonger" from London. He died about 1627 at Boston Harbor, leaving a son, John, who on 25 December 1643 assigned a bill to "my ffather mr. Samuell MAVERICK" and was living in 1650, and probably other children, since Mrs. Amias MAVERICK, in a letter from "Nottells Island in Massachusetts Bay", dated 20 November 1635 and addressed to Mr. Robert TRELAWNY, merchant, at Plymouth, England, speaks of her "ffatherless children".
      It seems Sir Ferdinando GORGES and Captain MASON gave the original bond (Plymouth Company deed dated 10 Aug 1622) to settle Maine Province and made the deal with THOMPSON, "a cultured and travelled gentleman," whom they had previously employed in negotiations with high officials. According to Charles K. Bolton in "The Real Founders of New England," THOMPSON was "a shrewd man of business, familiar with all the enterprises for colonizing New England through his former position in England as agent for the Council." David THOMPSON about 1622/23 received the grant of some six thousand acres of Maine (now New Hampshire & Maine) on the condition of settling ten families within three years. He arrived in the spring of 1623 in the JONATHAN of Plymouth and built "a strong and large house" enclosed by a high palisade and protected by guns on the west side and near the mouth of the Piscataqua River at a place called "Little Harbor." This place is now Odiorne's Point in the town of Rye, NH.

      There is evidence in the Public Record Office, in London, under the date of 1622, of a grant to Thompson which is earlier than his grant of land by the Piscataqua River in NH and of the Island in Boston Harbor. It states: "A Pattent to David Thompson, M. Jobe, M. Sherwood of Plimouth for a pt (point) of Piscattowa River in New England." The point of land specified in this grant was well up-river, where salmon could be caught in great numbers by stretching a seine across the river at a narrow point which is supposed to have been used by Thompson for that purpose, thus giving good reason for its name, Thompson's Point.

      In the spring of 1624 he met with Capt. Robert GORGES, Capt. Francis WEST, Christopher LEVETT and two other men from New Plymouth to organize a government for New England and THOMPSON was one of the original councillors who had the power of government. To get the necessary capital, THOMPSON contracted with three Plymouth merchants to run the plantation five years, and then turn over to them three-fourths of the lands and profits. After three years' effort, he saw fit to remove to Thompsons Island in Massachusetts Bay, where he could have all his improved lands and all of his profits. Whether he had settled all the ten families within the three years, or whether GORGES and MASON had to come forward to finish the task, we do not know. There were apparently several people there in 1628 because Piscataqua contributed as much as Plymouth colony to the expense of banishing Morton, who was selling firearms to the Indians. During the year 1626, perhaps in the autumn, David THOMPSON took possession of the Island called "Trevour's" in Boston Harbor, afterward called by his name, and erected a habitation there. He died soon after. These facts shown to the General Court, they granted the island, which had been included in Dorchester, to his son John THOMPSON, 10 May 1648. !Pope, p.451

      His settlement on Thompson's Island was the first to be established in what is now Boston Harbor. His house like most of the early settlers' houses was set by the four points of the compass, facing south. It appears to have been some thirty feet square with a high steep roof covered with thatch. Inside was a broad, deep fireplace which served for both cooking and warmth. The hearth was large and equipped with roomy ingles and seats by the fire.

      The ruins of the old cellar wall and chimney of the original Thompson house were unearthed in 1889. They were remarkably well preserved. only the west corner, part of the west and north walls, the base of the chimney and part of the cellar floor were still intact. From these, the size, shape and position of the original structure were determined. The remains of the large open fireplace were found at the back of the ruins.

      The cellar walls and chimney were built of field stone and the floor was paved with bricks measuring ten inches square, which must have been brought from England. Among the ruins, fragments of long stemmed Dutch pipes and other earthenware and artifacts were found. Erosion has now obliterated every trace of this ancient establishment. Even the land upon which this ancient structure stood has been washed away by the sea and rains.

      Four depositions relating to THOMPSON'S Island are published in NEHGR 9:248 [1855]:

      I Wm. TREVOUR &c that "Thompsons Island" is "the" formerly called "Island of Trevour" which I took possession of in 1619 and declared the same (as the effect of my proceedings) to Mr David THOMPSON in London; on which information the said T. obtained a grant and patten for peaceable and quiet possession of said island to him and heirs forever: I being in the Company's service at the said time. To this I testify on oath 27 of 2d mo 1650. Deposed the day before named before me Icr. Nowell. I Wm. Blaxton testify that the Island called Thompson's I. is by Dorchester neck, and that I heard ould Mr. Thompson affirm that he had a patten for it and that there is an harbour in that island for a boate which none of the rest of the islands had and that these that put hoggs there doe it by his consent to my knowledge. Taken upon oath this 5th of the 5th mo 1650. William Hibbins

      I Saggamore of Aggawam testify that in the yeare 1619: or thereabouts as I Remember I went in my owne person with Mr David THOMPSON and then he took possession of the Island before Dorchester he likeing no other but that because of the Smale River and then no Indeans upon it or any wigwam or planting not hath been by any Endeans inhabbited or claimed since but two yeares agoe Harmlen an old Indian of Dorchester witnes my hand this 13th of July before Mr Greenleafe 1650. Edmund Greenleafe July 15th 1650

      I doe testify that in the yeare 1620 I came into this Country and I take it the same yeare I was in the Massachusett Bay with William Trevoyre and then being upon the Island lying neere Dorchester And called the said Island; Island Trevoyre and then no natives there inhabiting neither was there any Signe of any that had been there that I could perceive nor of many many yeares after. Miles STANDISH Further I Cann testify that David THOMPSON shewed me a very Ancient Pattent and that Isle Thompson was in it but the termes of it I cannot remember. Miles STANDISH Deposed before the whole court 25th October 1650. Edmund RAWSON, Secretary

      If "Caribdis underneath the mould" of *Thomas Morton's poem in the "New English Canaan" (page 277), written for the May pole revels in 1627, represents David THOMPSON, and "Scilla sollitary on the ground" in Amias, his widow, the THOMPSON was dead before May, 1627. The new husband lacking "vertue masculine" is of course Samuel MAVERICK, said to have been as strong as Sampson and as patient as Job. And she was, according to Morton, a difficult "Dallila"; but she was an heiress after THOMPSON's death, and suitors came by water from all about the Bay to pay their court to her.

      Mrs. THOMPSON was the daughter of William COLE of Plymouth, England. Perhaps her second marriage which prevented her return to England caused her father to threaten to deprive her of her property. Her letter from Noddles Island, dated 20 Nov 1635, asks Robert Trelawny to help her. !The Real Founders of New England, by Charles Knowles Bolton, 1974

      *Thomas Morton, d. c.1647, an English fur trader and adventurer, settled c.1624 at Merry Mount (now Quincy), Mass., and came into frequent conflict with his Pilgrim and Puritan neighbors. He was arrested three times on such charges as licentiousness and selling firearms to the Indians and was deported twice to England. He wrote a satiric tract against the New England Puritans, New English Canaan (1637; ed. by Charles Francis Adams, 1883; repr. 1966), and sought to have their charter revoked. Morton finally settled in Maine.
    Person ID  I15068  Bryant
    Last Modified  2 Apr 2005 

    Family  Amias Cole,   d. Aft 03 Sep 1672 
    Married  13 Jul 1613  St. Andrews Church, Plymouth, Devon, England Find all individuals with events at this location  [1, 2, 3, 4
    Children 
     1. Ann Thomson,   d. Oct 1615, Plymouth, Devon, England Find all individuals with events at this location
     2. Priscilla Thomson,   b. Oct 1616, Plymouth, Devon, England Find all individuals with events at this location
     3. John Thomson,   b. Jan 1619, Plymouth, Devon, England Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 09 Nov 1685, Mendon, Worcester Co, Massachusetts Find all individuals with events at this location
     4. Ann Thomson,   d. Nov 1620, Plymouth, Devon, England Find all individuals with events at this location
    Family ID  F1076  Group Sheet

  • Event Map
    Link to Google MapsBorn - Dec 1592 - Clerkenwell, London, Middlesex, England Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsMarried - 13 Jul 1613 - St. Andrews Church, Plymouth, Devon, England Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsDied - Bef May 1627 - Thompson's Island, Boston Harbor, Massachusetts Link to Google Earth
     = Link to Google Maps 
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    Pin Legend  : Address       : Location       : City/Town       : County/Shire       : State/Province       : Country       : Not Set

  • Sources 
    1. [S35] Torrey's Supplement no. 2, Sanborn, Melinde Lutz, (Genealogical Publishing Company, Baltimore, MD, 1995), p.63A (gives 18 July).

    2. [S260] GMB, Anderson, Robert Charles, (New England Historic Genealogical Society, Boston, Massachusetts, 1995), p.1808.

    3. [S159] Amy, David Thomson, Amy, Colonel Henry Joseph, (Author, Eastchester, New York, 1962).

    4. [S177] Saunders, Chapman-Thomson, Dorothy Chapman Saunders, Ph.D., (Author, Stuart, FL, 1983), p.248.


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