back Thomas Willett biographical notes (6) next
moved a more orthodox group of believers from the Boston area to the fertile Connecticutt [sic] River Valley and founded Hartford” (Wilson, page 26).

Thomas Willett’s experiences were more pleasant in that year. On July 6, 1636, he married Mary, the daughter of Worshipful John Brown (b 1584 in England; d April 10, 1662, at Swansea, Massachusetts), the son of Thomas Browne. Peter Browne, the uncle of John Browne had come over on the original Mayflower, and he and the elder Thomas Browne were sons of Thomas Browne, Senior. The Browns were from Swansea, England, and his wife Dorothy (nee Beauchamp) had immigrated from Cambridge, England, to Holland, and then followed the Puritans to Massachusetts. Governor Winthrop performed the ceremony. The Browns had been one of the last of the Green Gate Pilgrims to leave Holland for the new world. They were old friends of the Willett family.

“By this marriage, Willett allied himself with one of the most influential families of the Plymouth Colony. Mr. Brown had become one of plymouth’s [sic] most prominent figures and had been given a patent on the Kennebec. For twelve years he was a commissioner of the United Colonies of New England, and for eighteen years he was a governor’s assistant. Willett was a close friend of Isaac Allerton, that stormy petrel of the Mayflower, who is said to have been one of the most stirring persons among the first settlers of New England.

This assestment [sic] of Isaac Allerton is certainly different from the one given in the preceeding [sic] page. Allerton’s wife, Mary, had died during that first winter of 1621, several weeks after the stillborn birth of a son.

Mary Brown was from Plymouth, but for a while after their marriage they lived at Dorchester, then they returned to Plymouth sometime between 1641 and 1647...

[p. 6] In 1638, Mary (Browne) Willett received a legacy by the will of Mr. William Paddy of Boston, of “40 Shillings for a ring, out of affection for her.” This was a custom, along with the custom of giving a gift of mourning gloves, that survived late into the colonial era. Her husband was busy establishing a new home for his new bride.

“In 1639, he was granted a tract of one hundred acres in Duxbury, where he established a homestead. He invested in horses, cattle, goats, sheep, swine, much of what he later sold in New Amsterdam. Successful as an Indian trader, he extended his operation, becoming a trader with the Dutch, a large landholder, and ultimately a ship owner” (“Magazine of American History,” volume 17, page 233; Smith, page 44).
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