Sunday, November 17, 2013

Thomas Pope and Sarah Jenney

I have always found the idea of journeying across the ocean in a ship with multitudes of people, a minimum of space and the little knowledge of what you might face a daunting prospect.  Perhaps that is why I have a fascination with my ancestors who made that trip in the early 1600's.

Thomas Pope was born in England around 1608 around Kent, England to John Pope and Mary Haisnoth.  He traveled to the New World during the great migration arriving sometime around 1630.  I have read that he and his father, John, might have been passengers on the Mary and John, but I have never seen proof of that.  He married on 28 Jan 1637 to Ann Fallowell and I know that they had at least once child together, Hannah Pope b. 17 Aug 1739 in Plymouth, MA d. 12 Mar 1710 in Plymouth, MA m. to Joseph Bartlett.  However, Ann must have died sometime before 29 May 1646, because Thomas Pope married Sarah Jenney at that time.   Thomas Pope was a cooper by profession which is something that probably doesn't make a lot of sense to us today.  However, during the early colonial days, a man who could make a barrel to store food or other produces was a valuable commodity.  Most entries about Thomas Pope concern the buying and selling of land.  During his lifetime, he served during the Pequot War, surveyed highways and served as a constable in Plymouth.  He died sometime before between 9 Jul 1683 when his will was dated and 4 Aug 1683 when an inventory of his estate was taken.

Sarah Jenney was the daughter of John Jenney and Sarah Carey.  She truly was from true Puritan stock.  Her parents married in Leyden, Holland on 1 Nov 1614.  They made the decision to travel to the New World and sailed on the Little James in 1623.  Sarah was born in July 1623 on the ship during its passage across the ocean.  It seems to be bad enough to make that trip on your own or with children - but to be pregnant and near giving birth, that was certainly a courageous undertaking. (Her mother, Sarah Carey, lived to be about 66 years old)  On 29 May 1646, the 22 year old, Sarah married the 38 year old widower, Thomas Pope.   Between the years 1647 and 1665, Sarah and Thomas Pope had eleven children.  I would imagine that Sarah Jenney's family was probably well thought of in Plymouth.  Her father was one of the early Puritan separatists who moved to Leyden Holland and when he came to the Plymouth colony, he was granted the permission to build a grist mill that would produce enough meal and flour for the community.  The Pilgrims had been taught by the Indians to plant, harvest corn but their methods to mill the corn wasn't productive enough, so John Jenney build a grist mill in 1636 that remained in services until it was destroyed by a fire in 1847.  A replica was built and serves as a museum that demonstrates the milling of corn from the time of the Puritans.

Sarah Jenney outlived her husband by a few decades and died on 12 March 1709 in Dartmouth, Bristol Co., MA.  Sarah Jenney and Thomas Pope are my 8th great grandparents through my great grandmother, Shirley Louisa Pope.  Most of the eleven children of Thomas Pope and Sarah Jenney lived to adulthood and here is a list of their known children:


  • Seth Pope b. 13 Jan 1647 d. 17 Mar 1726 m. Deborah Perry (7th Great Grandparents) - Their son married his 1st cousin, Margaret Pope.
  • Susannah Pope b. 1649 d. Jul 1675 m. Jacob Mitchell
  • Thomas Pope b. 25 Mar 1651 d. bef 1700
  • Sarah Pope b. 14 Feb 1652 d. 1727 m. Samuel Hinckley
  • John Pope b. 15 Mar 1653 d. Jul 1675 (He and his sister, Susannah and husband were killed by Phillip's warriors while they were fleeing the Dartmouth garrison)
  • Mary Pope b. 1654 d. 1730 m. Stephen Peckham
  • Patience Pope b. 1655 d. 1675
  • Deborah Pope b. 1658 d. 1658
  • Joanna Pope b. 1660 d. 1695 m. John Hathaway
  • Isaac Pope b. 1663 d. 1733 m. Alice Freeman (7th Great Grandparents) - Their daughter, Margaret, married her first cousin, Elnathan. 
  • Jacob Pope b. 1665 d. 17 Dec 1751