History of Washington and Kent Counties,
Rhode Island

by J. R. Cole W.W.Preston & Co., New York, 1889


CHAPTER XIII.

TOWN OF SOUTH KINGSTOWN. p. 481:

General Features. -- Erection of the Township. -- Town Clerks. -- Township of Narragansett. -- Freemen. -- Early Births. -- Reminiscences. -- The Hazards, Robinsons, Rodmans, Watsons, Perrys, Sweets and other Families. -- Amusing Incidents. -- Short Sketches by Jeffrey W. Potter. -- A Suicide. -- Schools. -- Town Farm. -- Tower Hill. -- Presbyterian Church. -- Narragansett Pier. -- Hotels. -- Other Objects of Interest. --St. Peter's by the Sea. -- Presbyterian Church.
SOUTH KINGSTOWN is the largest town in the state.  It contains an area of 77.9 square miles.  Its ponds are large and numerous, and may become a source of great wealth by means of well tested systems of fish culture.  Its swamps, though extensive, may be converted by drainage into excellent agricultural lands, and its forests of rhododendrons are of remarkable beauty and size.  There are but few towns, probably, on our continent that contain so many rivers and brooks, springs, coves, islands, hills, points, beaches, rocks, swamps and other minor localities of historic interest.  Inasmuch as these natural features are of historic interest, and have a direct bearing when determining the character of the town, we give below the list in full, as prepared by Mr. Amos Perry, superintendent of the census of 1885:
Villages. -- Wakefield, Narragansett Pier, Peace Dale, Rocky Brook, Kingston (Little Rest), West Kingston, Usquepaug (formerly Mumford's Mill), Glen Rock (formerly James' Mill), Perryville, Burnside, Green Hill, Narragansett Ferry, Mooresfield, Tower Hill (an important point in the Pettaquamscutt purchase, and the county seat from 1729 to 1752), Bridge Town, and Gould.

Minor Localities. -- Point Judith, Backside, Little Neck, Great Neck, Tucker Town, Waits' Corner, Rodman's Corner, Curtis' Corner, Watson's Corner, Dockary's Corner, Columbia Corner, Armstrong's Corner, Matunuc, Sugar Loaf, Stony Point, Tower Hill Heights, Boston Neck, Harley's Mill (formerly Biscuit City), Glen Rock, Special Deep Hole, Sedge Beds, Flats, The Narrows, [482] The Burbank, The Sewal Purchase, The Glass House, The Casey House, Governor Arnold's House.

Lakes and Ponds. -- Salt or Point Judith Pond, Lake Narragansett, Lake Worden, or Great Pond (the largest body of fresh water in the state, Indian name Pesquamscot), Green Hill, Potter or Six Miles, Trustons, Yawgoo, Sherman or Hundred Acre, Barber's, Tucker's, Lake Tefft or Larkin's, Silver Lake or Kitt's Pond (has no visible outlet), Card, Westquage, Lake Matunuc, Wash or Whitehall, Perry, White, Long, Cedar Swamp, Pier, Little Comfort, Lily, Lily Pad, Thirty Acre, Rum, Spectacle, Hope, Duck, Turtle, Frog, Babcock's, Wild Goose, Money, Teel Pond, Goose, Plain, Tower Hill, Knowles, Snake, Gardiner's, Holleys, Cubit's, Tug, Well, Crying Child, Reed, Hot-house, Rutter, Pettaquamscutt.

Reservoirs. -- Wakefield Mill, Ice House Pond, Harley's Mill, Barber's Mill, Glen Rock, James' Mill, E. F. Watson's, Wells' Mill, Usquepaug, Lawton's, Mooresfield, Fresh Meadow, Peace Dale, Fiske's, Rocky Brook, Long Trough, Sprague, Holburton, Sea Side Mill.

Rivers and Brooks. -- Pettaquamscutt or Narrow, Pawcatuck (South Kingstown side), Saugatuck, Queen, Usquepaug, Chippuxet, Shickasheen or Miskianza, Indian Run, Willson's Brook, Wild Cat, Gardner's, Sherman Town (South Kingstown side), Rum (back side), Brown (back side), E. F. Watson, Smelt, Broad Rock, Old Saw Mill, Casey's, Silvia's, Tobey Neck, Brown's Brook (South Kingstown side), Factory, Mink, Niles, Champlin's, Wilcox, Old Mill River, Brenton's, Babcock's, Tucker Town, Wolcott, Marsh, Yawgoo, Cranberry, Moore's, White Horn, No Bottom, Rocky Brook, Stony Brook, Peckham's Creek, Sucker, Locke, Wells, Muddy, Alewife, Holley Chappell, Matunuc, Genessee.

Springs. -- Iron Mine, Gin, Lewis, Birch, Mt. Hope, Phillips, Stepening, White Oak, White, Billington, Dead Man, Big Boiling, Tub, Trout, Austin, Mineral, Corey, Rock, Sheldon, No Bottom, Broad Rock, Cedar, North Cedar, Eel, Nichols, Great, Indian, White Birch, Bull and Dyer, Square Meadow, Willow, Great Boiling, Pettaquamscutt, Dick, Watson's, Freelove, North, Marsh.

Coves. -- Pettaquamscutt, Sand Hill, Fish, Spring, Turner, Smelt Brook, Wheat Field, Congdon, Long, Mumford's, Ladd's, Champlin, Outside, Inside, Beech, Perch.

Islands. -- Great, Ram, Little Comfort, Hazard, Gooseberry, Cedar, Beef, Pine Tree or Plato, Jonathan's, Beach, Gardner, Cummock, Spectacle, Sage.

[483]
Hills. -- Tower Hill (Pettaquamscutt), Kings Town (Little Rest), McSparran, Sugar Loaf, Little Sugar Loaf, Rose, Green, Kitt's, Ferry, Tefft's, Old Mountain, Burial, Weston, Wood, Jumping, Whaley's, "The Hills," Cubit, Dugway, May, Briar, Rose, School House, Watson's, Winter, Christian, Carpenter's, Sheldon, Strawberry, Indian Ridge, White, Broad, Upper Mountain, Lower Mountain, Laurel, Niles, Chimney, Oatley, Ned's, Freelove, Locust, Hanna.

Points. -- Point Judith, Black, High, Thomas, Black Hill, Frank's Neck, Rye, Elm Tree, Buttonwood, Ram, Allen, Crown, Great Meadow, Little Meadow, Horse Shoe, Gooseberry Island, Jumping Hill, Succotash, Case, Stony, Rocky, Bonnet, Cormorant, Tobey, Long, Rutter, Rowland's, Wolcott, Reef, Harvey's, Locust Hill, Nichols'.

Beaches. -- Narragansett Pier, Rocky Point, Westquage, Little Comfort, Sand Hill, Wolcott.

Rocks. -- Pettaquamscutt, Broad, Rolling, Wild Cat, Peaked, Money, Peggy, Porphyry Ledge, Queen Anne, Indian Spring, Fanning's Table, Prospect, Old Man's Face, Clump, River Rocks, Horse Shoe, Whale, Bass, Daniel, Twin Brothers, Bog, League, Gunning, Quahaug, Flat, Indian, Black Point, Blue, Hale, Pierced, Tucker's Plain, Great Plain, Lock's, Old Cottrell, Jacob's Ladder, Comet, Bonnet, Old Sow's Back, Saddle, Mountain, Spring, Horse Shoe, Dicken's Reef, Drum, Round, Reef Point, Short Point, Long Point, Wolcott Point, Sunken Reef, Poonnock, Hopkins.  Glen Rock ledge has been worked, also a ledge at Mooresfield.

Swamps -- Great (its area is nearly five square miles), Cedar, Hemlock, Tefft, Tucker's, Babcock's, Genessee.

Woods. -- Ministerial, Borland, Dockary's, Potter's, Tefft's, Wilson's, Brown, Yawgoo, Wait's, Genessee.

Groves. -- Commodore Perry Place, Walnut, Minute Lot, Robinson's.

[483]

Historic. -- Training Lot (Carter hung there, May 10, 1751), Hanging Lot (Thomas Mount hung May 27, 1791), Ministerial Lot, Ordination Oak, Indian Run Fort, Slave Pen, Tan Yard, Tucker's Fort (1842), Commodore Perry Place, Dorethea's Hollow, Wager Weeden's Fountain, Hand Poles, Dale Carlia, The Breach, Smelt Weir, Hazard's Castle, Memorial Tower, Druid's Dream, Site of the Great Swamp Fight, Dec. 19, 1675, The Bonnet, naval battle, 1814, E. A. Noyes homestead, former home of (Jemina [484] Wilkinson) Wilkinsonians, Gen. I. P. Rodman born at Rocky Brook, Aug. 18, 1822, died Sept. 30, 1862, R. F. Gardner's House, at one time Lafayette's Headquarters, Bull's Garrison House on Tower Hill, burnt by the Indians, December, 1676, Indian Burying Ground near White Pond, The Sewal School Fund, acquired from a grant of land made in 1695 by Judge Samuel Sewal (1652-1730) of Salem Witchcraft notoriety, the income once appropriated for the support of the Kingston Academy is now spent by the school committee of the town; a fund for the support of the Congregational church of the town was acquired in the same way.  The history of this town has an intimate connection with the Pettaquamscutt purchase of 1658, provision for the maintenance of religion and education resulting therefrom.  Soldiers' Bronze Monument, 1886 (Westerly Granite Pedestal).  The house of John G. Clark, completed in 1886, is built of granite and finished in woods all obtained from his farm, which was included in a grant made by Kachanaquant, a son of Canonicus, in 1664.


The earliest census report published of South Kingstown was in 1730, at which time it contained a population of 1,523; it now has a population of 5,549.

The town of South Kingstown was set off from North Kingstown by an act of the general assembly February 26th, 1722-23.  Pettaquamscutt, however, was first settled January 20th, 1657-8.  On this date Quassuchquansh, Kachanaquant, and Quequaquenuet, chief sachems of Narragansett, for £16 and other considerations mentioned in the deed, sell to Samuel ilbor, John Hull, of Boston, goldsmith; John Porter, Samuel Wilson and Thomas Mumford "all the land and the whole hill called Pettaquamscutt bounded on the south and southwest side of the rock with Ninigret's land, on the east with a river northerly bounded two miles beyond the great rock in Pettaquamscutt westerly bounded by a running brook or river beyond the meadow, together with all manner of mines, etc., they to have free ingress and egress on the sachems' lands."  They also grant them all the black lead in a place called Coojoot. Witnessed by John Lawton and Philip Lang and signed only by Kachanaquant (2d Vol., page 147, Ancient Land Evidences).  Quassuchquansh signed a similar deed, together with Kachanaquant, of the same date (see same record).

Kachanaquant having agreed, January 29th, 1657, to convey to the same men another tract, confirms the former sale and conveys [485] a tract "bounded as followeth -- beginning two miles from Pettaquamscutt Rock and runneth to the head of the great river 40 rood and goeth northerly from the Pettaquamscutt Rock and turneth north east and from said head goes north and north west by a river called Monassachuet ten miles and from that bound turns and runs west by south ten miles or twelve miles on a square and what it wants north to be made up etc. for £135, dated June 24th, 1660."  Witnessed by William Wilbor, Mathew Wilbor, John Rounds, etc.  (See same record as above.)

Appended to this deed is a confirmation made several years after by three sons of Kachanaquant.  Having purchased of Ninigret seven miles square, i.e., seven miles from Pettaquamscutt Rock, and all the land between said rock and the sea, March 20th, 1657, they were obliged to obtain a confirmation of the sale February 28th, 1661, from Wanomachin, another sachem, who also conveyed to them all his lands seven miles west and southwest of the Great Cedar swamp together with the swamp (page 150).

About twelve years afterward the purchasers (of whom there were now seven, William Brenton and Benedict Arnold, having been admitted by them), obtained another deed from Wanomachin, who in the deed is called sachem of Nayhantic, conveying "a tract of land running south and west from the rock at Pettaquamscutt in that part of the said colony above mentioned, and containing and including all the land between the river Mustogage which runneth from the said rock to the sea south and southeast, and the river Saugotogkett, which lyeth west from the former river and runneth into the ocean" (page 153).

Wanomachin had delivered siezin in the English form in April, 1661, and the certificate of it is witnessed by Anthony Low, John Tift, Eber Sherman (page 155).

February 25th, 1661, they obtained another deed of Kachanaquant, consenting to have their lands laid out, and "what is wanting northerly at the head of the great river pond shall be made up westerly, or any part of my land adjoining, i.e. to say along the Great Cedar Swamp and all my lands in the northwest side of said swamp, as also beyond the second Indian path that goes to Pequot northwest of that path."  This was to make up the twelve miles square.  He acknowledges himself in debt to them "£13--15s. For 13 coats a pair of briches."

In the Massachusetts records is found a protest made by some [486] of the Indians against the Pettaquamscutt purchasers.  "Wemosit, otherwise Suckquansh, Ninicraft, Quequakanut, otherwise Gideon, chief sachem of the Narragansett and Neantick countries, having received much injurie by Samuel Wildbare and others of his companie, they pretending title to Point Jude and other lands adyouneing, and have indeavoured to possess themselves forceably of the same both by building and bringing cattell, we having given them warning to the contrary, and they not taking warning, nor endeavoured to drive their cattell from of the lande, but they resisted and one of them presumed to shot of a gun at us.  Now we knowing we have not sould them any land there, and being thus injuriously dealt withal by them, we are forced to make our com -- to yourselves, the Commissioners of the United Collonies, hereby protesting against the said Samuel Wildbare and companie for their so unjust actings, and crave that this our protest may be received by you and kept upon recorde with you as our acte and deede, and crave that it may not be offensive to any English if that Samuel Wilbare and his company will not come to any faire trial, either before yourselves or some other indifferent judges, if then we endeavour to drive your cattell away, or take any corse whereby we may dispossess them.  That is our acte and deed we have put to our markes and seals in the presence of these witnesses this 9 Sept. 1662."

This protest was made to the commissioner of the colonies, and they wrote to Rhode Island concerning it.  (See Hazard's collection of state papers, II, 443.)

South Kingstown was set off and incorporated as a separate town in February, 1722.  No regular town meeting was held, however, until 1723.  This meeting was held at the house of Ichabod Sheffield, probably in January, 1723.  John Watson was chosen moderator and Robert Hannah was chosen clerk. John Watson and John Babcock were chosen representatives.  The second meeting was held March 4th, 1723.  Job Babcock, John Watson, Ichabod Sheffield, William Gardiner, Jonathan Turner and Isaac Sheldon were chosen councilmen; Peleg Mumford, Joseph Mumford and Benjamin Reynolds, constables; Ichabod Sheffield, town treasurer; Solomon Carpenter, town sargent.  On June 10th, 1723, it was voted that a town house should not be built.  On November 20th, 1723, Stephen Hazard and John Watson were chosen representatives to sit in the general assembly at Newport.  The meeting was held at the house of Ichabod Sheffield.

[487]
The town of Narragansett was set off from the town of South Kingstown by an act of the legislature in the January session of 1888, but as all matters pertaining thereto are not as yet satisfactorily settled, we will only give Section 1 of that act, which reads as follows:
 

"Section 1.  All that portion of the town of South Kingstown and being within the following boundaries, that is to say, commencing in Narragansett Bay at the easterly point of the boundary line between the towns of North Kingstown and South Kingstown, thence running westerly on said boundary line to the center of the Pettaquamscutt river, thence southerly and southwesterly by the centre of said river and of Pettaquamscutt Cove to a brook which empties in said Cove, and which brook is the dividing line between the property of Edward W. Davis and the Narragansett Improvement Co.'s land, thence Westerly following the Northerly line of said Edward W. Davis' land to the highway, thence Westerly across said highway to the line dividing the property of the heirs of Jeremiah P. Robinson from the property of  Samuel A. Strang, and following said line to the Silver Lake or Kits pond, thence following in a Westerly direction the Southerly shore of said Silver Lake to a line which divides the lands of the James B. Kenyon farm from the land of the heirs of Christopher C. Robinson, thence following in a Westerly direction to the Northerly line of said James B. Kenyon land to the Point Judith Pond, and continuing thence to the center of said Pond, thence Southerly through said Pond a straight line to a point midway between the Narrows, so called, thence Westerly midway through said Narrows to a point midway between Betty Hull Point and Cummock Island, thence Southerly through said Pond a straight line to a point midway between Gardner's Island and Beach Island, thence Southerly a straight line through said Pond to a point midway between Gooseberry Island and Little Comfort Island, thence a straight line to the center of the breach way and to the Atlantic Ocean, and thence following said Ocean and Narragansett Bay Easterly and then Northerly to the point of the beginning, is hereby incorporated into a District by the name of Narragansett, and the inhabitants thereof shall have and enjoy the like benefits, liberties, privileges and immunities and be subject to like duties and responsibilities as the several towns in this state generally enjoy and are subject to, except as is hereinafter provided."
[488]

The town clerks of South Kingstown have been: Robert Hannah, from June, 1723 to June, 1736; Benjamin Peckham, to June, 1743; Thomas Hazard, to June 1747; Samuel Gardner, to June 1753; Thomas Hazard, to June, 1749; Jeffrey Watson, to June, 1753; William Potter, to June, 1779; James Helms, to June, 1812; Silas Brown, to June, 1827; Thomas R. Wells, to June, 1853; Powel Helms, to January, 1858; John G. Perry, to June, 1887; Howard B. Perry, present clerk.

FREEMEN OF SOUTH KINGSTOWN. -- "A list of freemen belonging to South Kingstown taken from ye Records of ye Late Kingstown September ye 16, 1723. The former List (See North Kingstown) bearing Date the 12th of December, 1696: Moses Barber, Nathaniel Niles, Henry Gardner, Samuel Hopkins, Thomas Hazard, Stephen Hazard, William Congdon, Joseph Hull, William Gardner, Samuel Warden, jr., Samuel Helms, John Watson, jr., James Kinyon, Robert Hannah, George Babcock, Thomas Potter, Robert Potter, Jonathan Turner, John Shelden, jr., Ichabod Potter, Christopher Allen, Daniel McCooun, Joseph Cass, jr., Solomon Carpenter, Abiel Sherman, Stephen Wilcox and son, Nathaniel Gardner, Robert Cass, Henry Gardner, Ephraim Gardner, Benjamin Sheffield, Edmond Sheffield, Daniel Smith, George Hazard, Nathan Niles, Thomas Joslin, John Kinyon, Peter Boss, William Robinson, Richard Mumford, Daniel Knowles, William Mumford, Robert Knowles, Stephen Hazard, jr., Robert Hazard, jr., Joseph Mumford, Jeremiah Sheffield, Emanuel Cass, George Hazard, son of Thomas; John Gardner, Benjamin Mumford, Benjamin Hazard, Thomas Potter, jr., Ichabod Potter, jr., Peleg Mumford, Joseph Congdon, William Clarke, Ephraim Bull, Thomas Kinyon, George Babcock, jr., John Potter, son of Thomas, Samuel Barber, John Browning, Pasco Austin."

EARLY BIRTHS. -- William Congdon (son of William and Mary) was born ye 25th day of December, 1698.  The children of Robert and Elizabeth Potter were: Marburg, born ye second day of February, 1697-8; Martha, born ye 10th day of August, 1699.  George Babcock was married to Elizabeth Hall the 28th day of November, 1694.  Mary Babcock was born to them the 20th day of September, on the 6th day of the week, 1695; George Babcock was born April 9th, 1699; David Babcock December 22d, 1700; Jonathan Babcock March 22d, 1702; Elizabeth (daughter of George) March 16th, 1704.

[489]
The births of the children of Joseph Cass and Hannah his wife: Joseph, July 16th, 1678; William, May 27th, 1681; Mary, December 2d, 1682; Hannah, July 6th, 1687; Margaret, August 20th, 1690; John, November 20th, 1699; Emanuel, November 2d, 1699.

Children born to Moses Barber and Susannah his wife; Dinah, January 5th, 1692-3; Lydia, February 24th, 1693-4; Samuel, November 8th, 1695; Susannah, October 23d, 1697; Thomas, October 19th, 1699; Joseph, October 16th, 1701; Martha, November 30th, 1703; Ruth, June 23d, 1705; Benjamin, March 10th, 1706-7; Mary, March 13th, 1708-9; Ezekiel, March 6th, 1710; Abigail, January 6th, 1712-13.

Mary Place (daughter of Enoch and Mary) was born October 16th, 1697.

The children of Ephraim and Mary Bull: Mary, born July 30th, 1693; Rebeckah, July 27th, 1697; Content, November 24th, 1699.

The children of Ephraim and Hannah Bull: Ephraim and Hannah, twins, born April 18th, 1702, "in ye night."

Thomas Mumford, September 14th, 1706.

James Allen, June 15th, 1688.  He was son to Christopher and Elizabeth Allen.

John, son to William and Elizabeth Brown, was born August 6th, 1708.

Margaret Smith, daughter to John and Mary Smith, was born October 2d, 1708.

Ruth Robinson, daughter to John and Mary Robinson, was born March 12th, 1708.

Elizabeth Gardner, daughter to Elizabeth Gardner, was born May 17th, 1708.

Bathsheba Smith, daughter to John and Mary Smith, was born April 7th, 1710.

Henry Gardner, son to Henry and Abigail Remington, was born February 25th, 1691; Ephraim, January 27th, 1693; William, October 27th, 1697.

Mary Robinson, daughter to John and Mary, was born September 30th, 1705.

Children of Stephen and Elizabeth Hazard: Mary, July 20th, 1695; Hannah, April 20th, 1697; Susannah, April 20th, 1699; Stephen, November 29th, 1700; Robert, September 12th, 1702; Samuel, June 29th, 1705; Thomas, July 28th, 1707.
[490]

The children of Joseph and Lacy Hoxse: Zebulon, August 11th, 1697; Mary, September 15th, 1699; Joseph, November 25th, 1701; Ann, August 1st, 1704; Gideon, July 3d, 1706; Lodowick, September 27th, 1708; Ann, December 10th, 1716; Zebulon, September 21st, 1718.

Sarah Robinson, daughter to John and Mary Robinson, was born January 22d, 1706-7.

The children of John and Sarah Potter: Martha, December 20th, 1692; John, May 20th, 1695; Samuel, September 2d, 1699; Sarah, April 15th, 1704; Susannah, September 17th, 1706-7; Samuel, July 28th, 1715.

The children of Samuel and Mary Brown: Sarah, December 12th, 1703; Mary, July 17th, 1705; Jeremiah, October 29th, 1707; Penelope, October 27th, 1709; Samuel, November 5th, 1711.

The children of Rouse and Sarah Helms: James, May 7th, 1710; Sands, August 21st, 1711; Rouse, February 11th, 1712-13; Nathaniel, December 17th, 1714; Benedict, February 17th, 1716; Simeon, December 15th, 1718; Benedict, 2d, October 3d, 1720.

The children of Samuel and Mary Brown: Elizabeth, October 28th, 1713; John, November 14th, 1715; Freelove, January 29th, 1717; Zepheniah, December 23d, 1721.

Children of Ezekiel and Ann Johnson: Ann, July 24th, 1718; Elizabeth, March 5th, 1719; Benjamin, May 5th, 1722.

The children of Joseph and Mary Sheffield: Joseph, April 5th, 1711; Mary, September 9th, 1712.

REMINISCENCES OF THE FREEMAN. -- Moses Barber was born in 1652, and died in 1753.  In 1692 he married Susanna Wait.  Their children were: William, Moses, Dinah, Lydia, Samuel, Susanna, Thomas, Joseph, Martha, Ruth, Benjamin, Mercy, Ezekiel, Abigail, Daniel and Ann.  The old Barber house stood on a knoll near the present residence of Mrs. Luke Clarke.

Nathaniel Niles was born in 1642.  He married Sarah Sands, February 14th, 1671, and died December 22d, 1727.  His son Samuel Niles, born in 1674, had three wives †Elizabeth Thatcher, Anne Coddington and Elizabeth Whiting. Samuel Niles moved to New Shoreham, where he was attacked by the French privateers at the time they landed and plundered the inhabitants.  This raid was made July 3d, 1689, when he was fourteen years of age.  In the year 1700 he accepted a call to preach at Block Island.  In 1745 he published "Tristia Ecclesiarum."  He also wrote other books, one of which, "God's Wonder Working Providence for [491] New England in the reduction of Louisburg," was in verse.  Nathaniel Niles, brother of Samuel, born in 1677, was justice of the peace in 1709.  In 1740, under appointment by the assembly, he built a watch house at Point Judith.  The watch kept in these houses by the different towns was placed under regulations of the council of war.

Henry Gardner was appointed on a committee to lay out the highways of South Kingstown in 1703.  Many of these roads are still in use.  The Hazards of South Kingstown are and have been numerous.  They descend from Thomas Hazard, the ship builder, who was born in 1610 (see sketch).

Joseph Hull was a preacher.  He was born in 1652, married Experience Hooper in 1676, and in 1681 the first meeting for worship by the Quakers was held at his house.  He was fined £7 for beating the sheriff for prosecuting him because of his religious belief, but the fine was afterward abated.  He was minister of the denomination that build a house of worship at Mashapaug in 1702.

Samuel Helms was one of the elder brothers of Rouse Helms, a very influential man in South Kingstown.  Rouse Helms for a number of years, beginning in 1714, was deputy.  In 1720 he was clerk of the assembly, and was judge of the superior court for over twenty years.  He and Francis Willett, appointed by the assembly in 1723, drew a copy of all the records belonging to South Kingstown from the records of the late Kings Town.  The charge made for the work was £60.

Robert Hannah was the town clerk from 1723 to 1736, inclusive.  He died in 1736.

Thomas Mumford is spoken of as purchaser of a large tract of land in Pettaquamscutt of certain Indian sachems in 1658.  In 1668 he and his wife, Sarah Sherman Mumford, sold to Peleg Sanford of Newport 1,000 acres of this land for £25.  His son, Thomas, born in 1656, married Abigail, who was murdered by a slave belonging to him.  The murderer, a negro, drowned himself to prevent being taken alive.  The assembly ordered his body to be disposed of in the following manner, as a terror to others perpetrating like barbarities: his head, legs and arms to be cut from his body and hung in some public place near Newport, and his body to be burned to ashes.  In 1708 Mr. Mumford deeded 180 acres of land in Point Judith to his son George.  He and his wife were buried in the Mumford burying ground.
[492]

Benjamin Congdon, as early as 1671, bought of William Brenton and Benedict Arnold and others 230 acres in Narragansett, near "Pettacomscott," and in 1710 he and seventeen others bought 7,000 acres of vacant lands in Narragansett.  His children were: William, Benjamin, John, James, Elizabeth and Susanna.


South Kingstown Continued


These documents are made available free to the public for non-commercial purposes by the Rhode Island USGenWeb Project.
Transcribed by Tricia Autry, <PJAutry@aol.com>, 1999.


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