Pierce Family

Percy/Pierce/Pearce Family Unsubstantiated

It appears that after all of these years that the origin of this line may be completely false. Frederick Clifton Pierce wrote several books about the Pierce family but had apparently fabricated much of the earlier information. Unfortunately, his information was included in the works of others and now has contaminated many other genealogies. Michael Pierce posted a document in 2017 regarding all of these errors. Please see that information at the end of this page. I would disregard everything that connects us to the Percy family at this point. In the meantime, it’s possible that Richard Pearce born in 1615 and down may be correct.

Incorrect information:

Galfred Percy>William Percy>Alan Percy>William Percy>William Percy>Agnes Percy>Henry Percy>William Percy>Henry Percy>Henry Percy>Henry Percy>Henry Percy>Henry Percy>Henry Percy>Henry Percy>Ralph Percy>Peter Percy was born 1447 (Standard bearer to Richard the Third at the battle of Bosworth Field in 1485)>Richard Percy (founded Pearce Hall in York, England, where he lived and died)>Richard Percy. It is thought that the spelling of the name changed to Pearce at this point. Richard had two sons:

  • Richard Pearce was born 1590 and married in England to Martha. He resided in Bristol, England, and came to America in the ship “Lyons” from that place. I am descended twice from this Richard Pearce through two of his sons, see below.
  • Capt. William Pearce was born 1595 was master of the ship “Lyons”.
Richard Pearce

Richard Pearce was born 1615 and married on May 5, 1642 to Susannah Wright daughter of John Wright was born August 5, 1627 in Essex, England. Their children:

Richard Pearce married Experience

Martha Pearce was born 1645 and married Mahershallalhashboz Dyer (1643-1670) He was the son of William and Catharine Dyer.

John Pearce was born 1647 and married Mary Tallman

Giles Pearce was born 1651 and married Elizabeth Hall in 1776 daughter of William Hall was born 1613 and Mary Thomas was born 1604. Their children:

Jeremiah Pearce was born 1678 and married Abigail Long was born 1682 daughter of Phillip and Hannah Pearce. Their children:

Susannah Pearce married George Brownell son of Thomas and Ann Brownell. They had the following children:

  • Susanna Brownell was born 1676 and married John Reed
  • Sarah Brownell was born 1681
  • Mary Brownell was born1683 and married William Hall
  • Martha Brownell was born 1686 and married Samuel Forman
  • Thomas Brownell was born 1688
  • Joseph Brownell was born 1690 and married Ruth Cornell
  • Wait Brownell was born 1693 and married Joshua Sandford
  • Stephen Brownell was born 1695 and married Martha Earle

Mary Pearce was born 1654 and married Thomas Brownell, Jr. brother to George Brownell.

Their children:

  • Thomas Brownell was born 1679
  • John Brownell was born 1682
  • George Brownell was born 1685
  • Jeremiah Brownell was born 1689
  • Mary Brownelll was born 1692
  • Charles Brownell was born 1694
  • Thomas Brownell was born 1732

John Pearce and married Mary and Mrs. Rebecca Wheeler

Samuel Pearce

Hannah Pearce

Martha Pearce

Sarah Pearce

William Pearce

Mary Pearce

Richard Pearce published what was thought to be the first almanac in America in 1639.

Double Pierce Connection


From Seven Pierce Families collected by Harvey Cushman Pierce 1936, Wash. D.C.

More information on the Brownell family in Pownal, Vermont

The Argument Against Richard Pearce Who Sailed on the Ship Lyon

Special thanks to Michael Pierce for his outstanding work researching our earliest known ancestor, Richard Pearce. When I first started researching, I was surprised and happy to find that our ancient Pierce ancestors were already researched and that we were descended from the noble line of Percy. It was one less line that I needed to research back in the days of old-fashioned library research and the time and cost of sending off for information. This has been a hard lesson on what sources to trust. Just because it’s a family history–doesn’t mean it is accurate. So, along comes Michael who did extensive research and was able to separate fact from fiction. He actually took the time to compare dates, locations and other data to see if they lined up. Here is what Michael had to say:

When I read FC Pierce’s (Frederick C. Pierce) genealogies on Captain Michael Pierce and Richard Pearce I attempted to find evidence to corroborate what he presented in his books. I couldn’t find that evidence. There was no evidence that the elder Richard even existed. More recently I looked deeper into Richard Pearce of Portsmouth. I am attaching documentation that I have on Richard.

It look that Susan/Susanna was not the daughter of George Wright. She was the daughter of John Wright. The English Origins of New England Families has a very well sourced section on Susanna.

“The Rhode Island Historical Magazine, Vol 5,” has information on Richard Pearce, although it is incorrect on identifying Susanna’s father. I have tried to the other information in the article. You will probably want to do that.

Your web says that Richard Pearce published the first almanac in America. He was still in England in 1639. It is said that William Pierce published the almanac in 1639. Several sources say that William Pierce published “An Almanac for New England for the Year 1639.”

In addition, Michael wrote a paper and here are some excerpts from that:

1.     Without providing any proof, FC Pierce says Richard Pearce sailed to America on the ship Lyons [sic], which was captained by his “brother” William Pearce. William Pierce did sail the ship Lyon at least four times.[i] There is no Richard Pearce on any of the surviving Lyon passenger lists. There is not one piece of evidence that William Pierce had a brother named Richard who sailed with him on the ship Lyon. The son of this mythical Richard was Richard of Portsmouth. The last voyage of the Lyon was in 1632, as it hit a reef and sank in April 1633.[ii] Richard of Portsmouth would have had to have arrived in New England no later than 1632. However, Richard of Portsmouth arrived sometime between 1642, and 1654.

Richard Pearce (later of Portsmouth, RI) was married to Susan Wright in Waltham Abbey, Essex, England on 5 May 1642.[iii] The first record of Richard Pearce in America was in on 12 February 1654, when he witnessed a deed in Rhode Island.[iv]

2.     The Richard Pearce Genealogy states that the father of Captain William Pierce and Richard Pearce of Portsmouth was another Richard. Not only is there no evidence that William and Richard were related, the parentage of neither has ever come to light.  There is no mention of Michael or John Pierce, the Patentee in this book.

3.     Frederick Clifton also made John Pierce of Dorchester, Massachusetts Bay Colony a brother to Richard Pearce of Portsmouth, RI. There is no basis for this assertion.

4.     The evaluation of the Richard Pearce Genealogy is not unique to this writer. Robert Charles Anderson in The Great Migration Begins, made the following statement:  “In 1888 Frederick Clifton Pierce published one of his usual confused productions, a Pearce Genealogy, Being the Record of the Posterity of Richard Pearce, An Early Inhabitant of Portsmouth, in Rhode Island…(Rockford, Illinois, 1888). He made John Pierce of Dorchester and Boston the son of this elder Richard Pierce, and the latter was supposedly brother of WILLIAM PIERCE, mariner, of Boston, and father of a younger Richard Pierce of Portsmouth, Rhode Island. The elder Richard does not seem to have existed, nor is there evidence that any of the three other men are related to one another.”[v]


[i] Anne Stevens: https://www.packrat-pro.com/ships/shiplist.htm   (Accessed 5/10/20).

 [ii] Anne Stevens: https://www.packrat-pro.com/ships/lyon4.htm     (Accessed 5/10/20).

 [iii] Waltham Holy Cross Register of Baptisms, Marriages, & Burials 1642 to 1653. Parish registers for Waltham-Abbey, Image 914 of 2317;  England, Essex Parish Registers, 1538-1997, FamilySearch.com, film 004298752; Gary Boyd Roberts (Selected and Introduced By) English Origins of New England Families, From the New England and Genealogical Register, Second Series in Three Volumes, Volume III, (Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc, Baltimore, ł985), 882 (Image 885 of 998), Ancestry.com; Clarence Almon Torrey with Revised Introduction by Gary Boyd Roberts, New England Marriages Prior to 1700, (Baltimore, Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc.,1985), 584 (Image 599 of 1022). (Ancestry.com).

 [iv] Col. T. L. Casey, “Percy, Perc, Pearcy, Pearce, Peirce, &C., In Rhode Island, 1650-1700.” The Rhode Island Historical Magazine, Vol 5, 1884-85, 40. (The Newport Historical Publishing Co., Newport, R.I.)

 [v] Robert Charles Anderson, The Great Migration Begins: Immigrants to New England 1620-1633, Volume III, P-W, (Boston, Great Migration Study Project, New England Historic Genealogical Society, Boston, 1995), 1469-1472. (Ancestry.com)

Here are some sources you might want to look at.

Waltham Holy Cross Register of Baptisms, Marriages, & Burials 1642 to 1653. Parish registers for Waltham-Abbey, Image 914 of 2317;  England, Essex Parish Registers, 1538-1997, FamilySearch.com, film 004298752; Gary Boyd Roberts (Selected and Introduced By) English Origins of New England Families, From the New England and Genealogical Register, Second Series in Three Volumes, Volume III, (Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc, Baltimore, ł985), 882 (Image 885 of 998), Ancestry.com; Clarence Almon Torrey with Revised Introduction by Gary Boyd Roberts, New England Marriages Prior to 1700, (Baltimore, Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc.,1985), 584 (Image 599 of 1022). (Ancestry.com).


https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:S3HT-6SCQ-7KK?i=913 – Link to Richard and Susan’s marriage.

Download documents supporting Michael’s facts here.

Deane Winthrop House

Email 1:

Dear Ms. Strouse, I congratulate you in concern to your WebSite. Your site is informative as well as creative. I am writing to thank you for the information you posted in concern to the Pierce Family history. My name is George Desaulniers and I am a member of the Winthrop Historical Commission and the Winthrop Improvement and Historical Association. I have been researching Captain William Pierce for approximately seven years. The commission is presently in the process of erecting a historical sign in front of a historical landmark called the” Deane Winthrop House”. This sign will, in part, involved Captain William Pierce’s history. The “Deane Winthrop House” was built between 1637 and 1650. The association which has preserved and maintained the house is called “The Winthrop Improvement and Historical Association.” The association believes the original portion of the house house was built by Captain William Pierce. The material you posted on your Web page agrees with the material I have researched. It might be interesting for anyone researching Captain William Pierce to be aware that this house exist. This house is situated on the original land, granted to Captain William Pierce in 1637. Winthrop is a small town less than two square miles situated at the mouth of Boston Harbor. Captain William Pierce also had a house in Boston which once stood near the Old State House on what is now Pierce Alley. I have many more details in concern to Captain William Pierce. I would like to share the information I have as well as receive more information. I have maps and pictures that might be of interest to anyone pursuing this fascinating Mariner. You can reach me at: George Desaulniers Congratulations again on your website.

Email 2:

A great deal has transpired since I last sent you this e-mail. The Winthrop Historical Commission is in the process of erecting a historical sign in front of the Deane Winthrop House. The sign acknowledges both European and African American history associated with the house. The Winthrop Improvement and Historical Association, an organization dedicated to preserving the Deane Winthrop House is opposed to the sign. The sign has been made and its future lies in the hands of the selectman. The sign reads as follows:


Captain William Pierce, renowned mariner and early Puritan slave trader was allotted this land in 1637. Governor John Winthrop was granted the adjoining plantation, which included most of Winthrop Beach and Point Shirley. He kept Native American slaves on the nearby Governors Island, which is now, part of Logan Airport. In his journal dated February 26, 1638, Winthrop wrote that Pierce returned from the West Indies on the Salem ship Desire “and brought some cotton, and tobacco, and Negroes, etc”. Later both Capt. Pierce and Gov. Winthrop’s plantations were acquired by Governor Winthrop’s son Deanne, who also used slave labor. Slavery was essential to the economy in this era. “Marrear”, “Primas”, and a child named “Robbin” were slaves of African decent whose names appeared in Deane Winthrop’s Will of 1702. It is assumed that these slaves were interred in a nearby “Negro Burying Ground” not far from the northerly end of Winthrop Street.

The controversy surrounding the resistance of the sign by the Winthrop Improvement and Historical Association made the headlines in local paper,the page of the Boston Globe, NPR radio and the 5 PM news. The following documents and newspaper articles may help you further understand the controversy.

There is a great deal more information available if you are interested. The Pierce family’s support of the sign would be welcomed.

Thank you,

George Desaulniers
106 Bowdoin Street
Winthrop MA 02152

Line of Sanford and Mary King-Pierce

Came to Massachusetts in 1635 — Kirk D. Ransom from the La Mance book, Chapter XXIV

The Pierce Family
Line of Sanford and Mary King-Pierce

Starting on page 160.

Mary, the third daughter of Samuel and Deborah Greene-King, [Mary6, Deborah5, James4, John3, James2, John1] married Sanford Pierce6, the son of Olive Greene-Pierce5, [Samuel6, Olive5, Ebenezer4, Ebenezer3, John2, John1]. The Greene-Pierce descent of both has been traced {in previous chapters}, also the La Valley-King descent of Mary. The Pierce family also has its history, interwoven in part with others, and will be given here, before the personal story of Mary and Sanford is begun. I have confidence in the pedigree as her given. It is the result of close comparison and study of very old records, which are, however, as I am free to admit, brief and sometimes confused.

The name was originally Norman French, and was then St. Piere — (Saint Peter.) The first name-bearer was a devotee of Saint Peter, who had taken, it is supposed, some special vow or obligation before the shrine of the saint. The family were of noble blood. Their coat-of-arms showed two bend sable. It is an old escutcheon, showing some variation in different lines. They came to England at the Conquest, or soon after, and there the name quickly corrupted itself into Pierce or Pirce, written at first Piers or Perres.

The descendants of the younger sons of the family became reduced to the common rank. It is perhaps but a coincidence, yet it is worth noting, that William Langland who wrote the famous poem of “Piers the Plowman,” about 1362, locates his Piers of the remarkable visions in the Malvern Hills, on the Welsh border. The first glimpse we get of the line of Pierces we are trying to trace, is in North Wales about one hundred years after the date of the poem.[1]

In the Appendix it is told that a young woman of this Welsh Pierce family, prior to 1500, married an Ithell. Their son, Pierce Ithell, had a daughter Mary who married an Englishman, Richard Wardwell. One of the Wardwell’s sons married a Huguenot refugee’s daughter, Meirbe’ Lascelle.

The heads of this Huguenot family, Gershom and Meribe’ Lascelle, had another daughter whose name, as near as we can get at the original form, was Anteress, which would be pronounced An-te-ress, or An-te-race, with the accent on the last syllable. The name was handed down in the Pierce family for several generations, under the forms of Antrace, Antires, Anterace, or Ansutrass, and particularly as Antress and Anstress. This daughter with the odd name married a Pierce, whose baptismal name is unknown to us. We do know that he belonged to the same branch whose blood was in the Wardwell line into which Merib’ (Maribah,) the sister of Anteress, married.

The French blood thus brought into the Pierce family has markedly shown itself. The romantic and spectacular side of the Gallic character has tinged the whole blood of this line. An instance is the act of old Robert the Emigrant, who brought bread with him from England, bread that is yet preserved in his family, a memento as sacred as the Jewish shew bread of the altar itself. The Pierce of to-day has a French, imaginative, sentimental and reminiscent side to his character, however, practical he may be in other ways. Every pathetic or romantic episode in their history has been preserved, until their chronicler suffers from embarrassment of riches, so many and so varied are these anecdotes. The Lascelles, like so many French families, delighted in mellifluous and high-sounding names. More than any other branch of the family, the Pierces have preserved this peculiarity. In studying 200 years of early New England records, the Pierces led any other family whatever in original, peculiar and poetical names. Pardon, Preserved, Myell, Suthcote, Val, Backup, and Clothier, Bashabee, Barsha, Squier, and Lewis-Desabaye-Besayade are a few of these names that now occur to me. To this day the Pierces largely choose sentimental names for their offspring.

Anteress Pierce had quite a family. Almost certainly she had an Ebenezer, Thomas, Michael, and Azrikam, and probably an Edward and a Stephen. One of her younger children was a daughter who married ____ King. This daughter’s descendants continued the names of Thomas, Michael, Ebenezer and Edward for several generations. Her sons Thomas, William, John and Michael King came to America in 1635, and a great-grandson, John King the Buccaneer, came to R. I. in 1665, a child of 11 years. Buccaneer John was the great-grandfather of Mary King-Pierce herself. So that by her and Sanford Pierce’s marriage were united her remote Pierce-Ithell and Lascelle-Wardwell blood, and his Pierce and equally remote infusion of Lascelle blood. Each was of course of Greene blood also. So these several small trickles from the parent streams, re-united, became something of a current itself.

In the next generation a large number of allied families, Waites, Hills, Wardwells, Lazells (Lascelles), Slocums, Brownells, Kings and Pierces came to the Colonies, seeking religious freedom. From the early records, General Ebenezer Pierce’s careful Pierce genealogy, and from the New England Historical and Genealogical Register, it appears that the Pierces among these may be subdivided into several groups of presumable brothers, the first descendants in each group cousins to those of the others, and all of course grandchildren to Antress Pierce and her husband. Only one group concerns this history, save that Thomas Pierce of Woburn deserves mention as being the ancestor of President Pierce.

The group in which we are interested consists of four brothers — so the best authorities consider them — John the Patentee, Robert, Capt. William and Capt. Michael. Three of these were men of distinction in their day. They were grandsons of Anteress Pierce, and sons of Azrika Pierce and his wife Martha.2

Besides these are three, evidently closely related to them and believed to be a brother’s children. These are John the Emigrant, of Watertown, Daniel of Watertown and Newbury, and Richard of Rhode Island. It is thought these three were the sons of a Jeremiah, but of his name there is no absolute certainty.

Before passing on to Richard of Rhode Island’s line, let us glance at the history of his three then-famous uncles. John the Patentee, (who may have been an uncle instead of a brother to the others.) was a merchant of London. He was the owner of the historic Mayflower. An association of merchants, with John Pierce at their head, secured a patent in 1620 from the Virginia Company for the use of the Mayflower colonists, who then expected to settle in Virginia. When the Mayflower returned in the spring of 1621, with the news of the change of base, John Pierce obtained a new grant or patent to Plymouth Colony, dated June 1, 1621. He himself started for the new world in the shop Paragon, but it proved unseaworthy and put back. He then sent the patent on the ship Good Fortune, which reached Plymouth Nov. 11, 1621. In remained in London, ** 16 footnote follows **So say all authorities but one, I find no trace of him in America.]} but used his means and ships in building up the colony.

He put his brother — so Gen. Ebenezer Pierce styles him — Captain William Pierce as master of first one and another of his shops. A year from the time he first visited Plymouth, Captain William owned 13 slaves. Doubtless he owned many more as his fortunes increased. In a letter of 1638, which has been preserved, is this language:

“The ship Desire, Capt. William Pierce, returned from the West Indies after a 7-month voyage. The brought cotton, tobacco and negroes from Providence, [one of the West Indies islands,] and salt from Tortugas.” And yea a historian of those days speaks of him as “A godly man, and a most expert mariner!” Doubtless he was a good man, for these things did not trouble men’s consciences then.

Pope in history says that up to 1640 Capt. William crossed the ocean oftener than any man then moving. He made many voyages between England and Virginia or to the West Indies. Twice he essayed to go to Plymouth, but each time had to put back because of a leaky vessel. This was in 1621 and 1622. In 1623 he came in the Ann, in the Charity in 1624, in an unregistered ship in 1625, in the Mayflower in 1629, and in the Lyon or Lyon’s Whelp in 1630, 1631 and 1632, making seven voyages to Plymouth within ten years. He brought a great many of his kindred over in his ships, also Rev. Cotton, Roger Williams and other eminent men.

At first he lived in Virginia, where he had a plantation of 200 acres at James City. Here his first wife, Mrs. Jone (Jane) Pierce, died. She left a daughter Jane, who married Hohn Rolfe, the widower of Pocahontas, the Indian princess who saved Capt. John Smith’s life. In 1632 he removed to Boston. Here he was of great influence, and made for them their first Almanac in 1639. In 1641 he attempted to land a ship-load of colonists on the Island of Providence, one of the Bahamas. The inhabitants resisted the intrusion, and in the battle that followed he was shot, the 13th of May, 1641.

Captain Michael Pierce, the third prominent one of the brothers, was an Ensign under Captain Miles Standish. In 1669 he was made Captain. He was easily the greatest Indian fighter of the King Philip War. But close to Rehoboth, Mass., near the Pawtucket River, he was hemmed in by a host of red men, on March 26, 1676. He had only 52 white men with him and 11 friendly Indians. In the fearful massacre that followed only three of the sixty-three escaped. Thus dearly he sold his life on that Sabbath day’s fight, so long ago. The family of Richard (his nephew) have his battle handed down in their memories, and tradition could be no more positive than theirs that they are nearly related to him. Richard Pierce’s line was exceedingly proud of their near relationship to Captain Michael, and named after him for five generations.

Richard 5 the Emigrant3 , came to Massachusetts, probably about 1635. His wife was Elizabeth ____. Richard was one of those who thought the Massachusetts authorities exercised tyranny in religious matters. He accordingly went to Portsmouth, R. I., and became a Friend or Quaker. His descendants of the particular line we are tracing, went to Prudence Island, or Chippacursett, as the Indians called it. Together with the Hills, who were relatives, the Allens and Sanfords, they were the leading families of that island, until the Revolutionary War. The British in vain tried to buy hay or provision from the Prudence Island farmers. They were so stanch a band of patriots that not one would part with provender for the British army, even at double price.

An English officer attempted to overcome the scruples of Hon. John Allen, of this island. The Hon, John, who was hot-headed, exploded with wrath, and refused in a taunting way to have anything to do with the redcoats. Wallace, the British officer in command, in reprisal for the insult, sent troops with orders to burn every house, barn and haystack on the island, from end to end. The order was carried out to the letter. Allen’s family were thrust out in their night clothes, and of their household possessions saved only some silver teaspoons that Mrs. Allen snatched up as the soldiers drove her out, and thrust into her bosom. Samuel Pierce, Senior, great-grandson of Richard the Emigrant, and grandfather of the Sanford we are tracing, was turned out of doors also, his house, barn and hay burned, and his cattle taken. He left the island at once, and none of the family ever returned. He saved a few small articles in his flight, and they are yet kept as heirlooms, including some of the garments, a teapot with the date of its making, 1746, stamped on it.

Richard the Emigrant’s line were mostly seamen. In a hundred years’ time no less than six were sea captains, and as many were drowned at sea. They were all salve-holders. The records would indicate that, next to the Tripps, they were collectively the largest slave-holders in the colony. One reason was that many sailors habitually made trips to Africa, trading New England products for slaves and gold dust. These slaves cost them but a trifle, and they could afford to own plenty of them. Some of the family died on the African coast, on slaving expeditions. The brother of Captain Daniel in our tracing line being one of them.

The close of the seventeenth century were the balmy day of the Buccaneers, those sea rovers who made it a matter of conscience to despoil Spanish possessions, and take the booty captured for their own. Spain was a hated nation. So far from considering themselves pirates, those free-booting ancestors thought it a feather in their cap to board Spanish vessels, and to take Spanish towns in the West Indies. The Prudence Islands Pierces had their full share in all this.

The family soon lost their Quakerism. During the Revolutionary War 48 Pierces of R. I., nearly all lineal descendants of Richard, Senior, enlisted in the army. Not a few of them were officers.

Richard’s son, Richard Jr.7, had by his first wife Joyce, a son Daniel8.4 This Daniel was married in 1708 to Patience (Patty) Hill, a distant cousin. Patience was the daughter of Johnathan Hill, the uncle of Ann and Susanna Hill who married “Wealthy” John Greene and Usal Greene. One of the oldest sons of Daniel and Patience Pierce was Samuel, Senior, whose house was burned by the British. In 1744 this Samuel married Hester or Eater Wiley. (The name is written both ways.) Their third son, Samuel, Jr., was born April 13, 1752. He married Olive Greene5, [Ebenezer4, Ebenezer3, John2, John1]. As her grandmother was probably a Pierce, she was a cousin on the Pierce side and a very distant one on the Lascelle-Wardwell side.”

________________end of extract. Other sections of this chapter are shown under each individual._______

from the La Mance book, page 165:

…Their third son, Samuel, Jr., was born April 13, 1752. He married Olive Greene 5, [Ebenezer4, Ebenezer3, John2, John1]. As her grandmother was probably a Pierce, she was a cousin on the Pierce side, and a very distant one on the Lascelle-Wardwell side.

Samuel and Olive lived mostly at Bristol, R. I. Here she died, July 14, 1786, in child-bed, at 35 years of age. The solid silver “name” spoon, an heirloom in the family, was doubtless presented to an Ebenezer Greene and Caleb Hill, the one the brother of Olive, the other Samuel’s great-uncle. It must always descend to an E. C. Pierce. The only sons that survived were Daniel, Caleb and Sanford. The last was evidently named for their fast friends, the Stanfords of Prudence Island. Sanford married his distant cousin, Molly King. [Deborah Greene-King5, James Greene4, John3, James2, John.1]”

from the La Mance book, starting on page 165:

Sanford was the oldest child of Samuel Jr. and Olive Pierce. He was born May 10, 1773. His wife, Molly King-Pierce, was two years his senior, having been born June 29, 1771. They were married in West Greenwich, R. I., which was her home, probably about 1797. What was known as the Military Tracts of Northern New York had been thrown open to settlement on advantageous terms. After living in Mass. for about a year they went to this region and settled in Onondaga County, in that part of Pompey afterwards called Fabius. It had only been surveyed in 1794, and bears, panthers and wolves abounded. Deer were so plentiful that the settlers had venison as commonly as we now have beef. Here they remained for 24 years, then removed to a new settlement just being made at Palermo, in Otsego County. Ebenezer, their “home son,” having moved to Northern Indiana in 1837, Sanford and his wife went to him, and died at his home, — Mary (Molly) Sept 9, 1838, and Sanford June 29, 1849.

Mary, the wife, was a slender, petite woman, with a fair, expressive face and beautiful eyes. She had the quick wit and bright way of her French grandmother, Marie La Valley-King. She had her supersensitive, nervous organization as well. A shock left a mental cloud for some years upon her in the latter part of her life.

Sanford and Mary had five children, all of whom lived to marry. Catherine remained in N.Y. The others all moved to La Grange Co., Indiana, and died there.”

__________________end of extract

par of Ebenezer Pierce son of Sanford Pierce b 10 May 1773 d 29 Jun 1849 married 1797 to Mary (Molly) King was born 29 June 1771 d 9 Sep 1838. Sanford Pierce was the son of Samuel Pierce b 13 Apr 1752 Prudence Island and Olive Greene b 1751 West Greenwich RI d 1786 Bristol RI. Mary King was the daughter of Samuel King and Deborah Greene. Deborah and Olive Greene go back to John of Quidnessette through is sons James and (Lt) John Clark.

from the La Mance book, page 166:

He was born Oct 19, 1801. He taught school at Pompey Hill, the winter he was 19. The next spring the family moved to what is now Palerno, then an unbroken forest.* (*His mother, Mrs Pierce, rode on horseback, with a feather bed tied on behind her and carrying a baby in her arms. It was hardly as stylish a mode of traveling as a modern automobile jaunt, but it answered all purposes then.) Dec 29, 1821, he was one of the principals to a double wedding, when Rachel McQueen became his wife, and his sister Catherine became the wife of Ephraim McQueen. Four children were born to them in their little cabin in the clearing, Polly (Mary), Seymour, Atelia and Clark. Mrs. Rachel Pierce died Sept. 15, 1832, in her 31st year.

His second wife was Julia Arabella Collins, who was born May 26, 1816, in Windham Co. Vermont. She outlived her husband nearly thirty-eight years, dying in Saratoga Springs, N. Y., Oct. 26, 1902, in her 87th year. She was more than an ordinarily capable woman, level-headed and energetic always. She was a capital hand at rehearsing stories of pioneer life. It was as good as a novel to hear her relate, when the western fever attacked her husband, how in 1837 they made the overland trip from N. Y. to Northern Indiana, with some other families. They were seven weeks on the road. There were twenty-six in the company, three of them babes under three months old. On the way, sixteen of the twenty-six came down with the measles, to say nothing of a score of other haps and ills.

A log house was hastily built in the deep woods. Here this girlish wife watched over the brood of six little ones, and quaked in her shoes each time an Indian showed his dusky face. One time Schomack, the old Pottowatamie Chief, granted and patted Mrs. Julia on the shoulder, patronizingly complimenting her to her husband by repeating, “Nice squaw! Nice squaw!”

Once when Eben — the name her husband usually was called – was away from home, six Indians stalked into the house. They helped themselves to the bread in the bake-oven, and as they were not given anything else one of them shook his fist in the young wife’s face. She expected to be killed, but he made signs they would leave if she would give them what they took to be a piece of dried venison. She gave it to them. The first to taste it made a horrible face, while the others burst forth into derisive hoots. The supposed venison was dried beef’s gall, about the bitterest thing on the face of the earth.

Eben Pierce was a man of sound judgment and irreproachable life. He died of small-pox Jan 20, 1865, at his home near Wolcottville, Indiana.”

_____________end of extract

may be known as Franklin E. Pierce?

one record has birth date as 04 Jan 1837

from the La Mance book, page 169:

“Rev. Frank was ordained a Baptist minister in 1869, and preached for some years in Indiana and Vermont. Is not now in charge of any work, although he occasionally preaches. His home is at Ellendale, North Dakota. None of his children live there. “It almost takes a state for a child,” as their father says, as they are scattered in Indiana, Ohio, Iowa, Minn., and S. Dakota. …”

Froand married History of Providence County, Vol I & II
Ed. by Richard M. Bayles; W.W. Preston & Co., NY. 1891
Biographical sketches, “Town of East Providence” Volume II

p. 172-73: Galen Pierce, son of Jeremiah and Candis (Wheeler) Pierce, was born in 1824 in Rehoboth, Mass., and was educated in the district schools. He was first employed as clerk in a grocery store for C. C. Godfrey in Providence, where he remained two years, and was for four years clerk for I. T. Tillinghast in same business, whom he afterward bought out and carried on the business for himself for 37 years at India Point. He came to East Providence about 1878, and was for a few years interested in the grocery business under the firm name of Pierce & Rich. After giving up the grocery business he was in the dry goods and shoe business three years, then retired and gave the business to his son, W. B. Pierce, who still carries it on. He has served in the town council. He married first Phebe Barney, of Providence. His present wife is Emily F., daughter of Samuel Wilmouth, of East Providence. His father was a carpenter by trade and carried on a large business for a number of years.

The LaMance Book

From Email: I saw your info on the Pierce, mainly the Sanford and Mary King Pierce. The LaMance Book did not have all her info right. It is right up into it come to Sanford father, His name was Samuel R. Pierce and he did married Olive Greene, but her father is not the Ebenezer in the book. Also Samuel R, Pierce is not the son of Samuel Pierce Sr. that married Hester Wiley. I’m not sure who their parents were, but I have evidence that those are not right. If you would like me to e-mail you the reason why they are not the ones I will be happy to do so. We need to get the word out because everyone is quoting from her book and the info is not right.

Note from Rootie: I often get information from others that claim that LaMance’s book was incorrect in places and I believe that to be true. I have quoted above directly from the book and it does not mean that I completely agree with all of the information. Another researcher, David Sanford is doing extensive research on the Pierce family also and I suggest you contact him if you are serious about learning more about this family.

Last Updated on January 24, 2024 by rootie

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