2224.Joan Borden. Born ca 1593 in Kent, England. Joan was baptized in Headcorn, Kent, on 29 Apr 1593.1 Joan died in Jun 1593 in Headcorn, Kent. Buried on 11 Jun 1593 in Headcorn, Kent.1
2225.John Borden. Born ca 1594 in Headcorn, Kent. John was baptized in Headcorn, Kent, on 28 Apr 1594.1
2226.Richard Borden. Born ca 1595 in Headcorn, Kent. Richard was baptized in Headcorn, Kent, on 22 Feb 1595/6.1 Richard died on 25 May 1671 in Portsmouth, RI.100 Religion: Quaker.
Richard inherited from his father lands in Headcorn, but in 1628 he moved to Cranbrook, wehre his wife had relatives. She, by the will of her uncle, Francis Fowle of Cranbrook, clothier, dated 8 Oct 1632 and proved 3 Apr 1633, was to received his messuages in Cranbrook, after the death of his widow, Elizabth Fowle. In 1637/8 Richard Borden emigrated from Cranbrook to New England, and settled at Portsmouth, RI, where he hald various public offices. He was freeman there 16 Mar 1640/1, a member of a committee to treat with the Dutch, 18 May 1653, assistant at Portsmouth, 1653, 1654, treasurer, 1654, 1655, commissioner, 1654, 1656, 1657, and deputy from Portsmouth to the Rhode Island General Assembly, 1667, 1670. He was a surveyor, and acquired large tracts of land in Rhode Island and in East Jersey (Monmouth County)). He was buried in the burial ground of the Society of Friends at Portsmouth.1
Richard was admitted an inhabitant of the island of Aquidneck (Rhode Island) in 1638, having submitted himself to the government that is or shall be established. He was alotted five acres 20 May 1638.100
Richard “came to New England in the ship Elizabeth and Ann in 1635, accompanied by his wife Joan and two children. In I638 he went from Boston to Portsmouth, Rhode Island, as one of the founders of that town, was admitted a freeman there in 1641, and subsequently held various public offices, including that of deputy to the general court. He worshipped with the Society of Friends, and in all of his dealings with his fellowmen he exemplified to a high degree the principles of that faith.”15
Seabury’s narrative from Weld’s Record of the Borden family:189
It has been said that Richard did not come over to New England with John, but waited until he received a letter from him, and came the year following, 1636. If it was so, this circumstance serves, in some good degree, to explain why his name is not found on the list of passengers in 1635. The commissioners found all their labours to prevent the emigration of obnoxious persons had been a complete failure, and, becoming satisfied by the experience of 1635, that they could not attain their object, they gradually relaxed in their efforts, and at last ceased to enforce the law, and suffered emigration to flow to New England unnoticed. On this account we have no list of passengers, or rather a very meagre one, to guide us in the case of Richard in fixing the year of his arrival in this country. He may, however, have come in the same ship with John by an arrangement with the captain, as was done in multitudes of other cases. In 1635 the ship Abigail, of London, is known to have landed in this country ninety persons more than were entered upon her passenger list in London, and a large portion of them were dissenting ministers and their families. and if it was so easy for the most obnoxious persons in England to avoid the surveillance of the government, I see no reason why Richard Borden might not have done the same, and thus have arrived in Boston in the Elizabeth and Ann with John and his family.
Of Richard's early history no more need be said. When the proposition of forming a settlement on Rhode Island was made to him, he entered into it with all his heart, and to it he devoted all his energies. All the necessary arrangements having been completed, the pioneers moved forward like the advance guard of an army to select the route and prepare the way for those who were to follow them, by removing obstructions, building temporary bridges across the rivulets that impeded their way or provide rafts on which to cross the larger streams, and also, charged with the duty of erecting suitable cabins for the reception of their wives and children upon the island. All this required stout hands and willing hearts, and, in this case, as in most others of a similar character, the labour fell upon a different class of men than the leaders of the Hutchinson party, or of its rank and file, most of whom never came to Rhode Island at all.
The place first selected for the settlement was about half a mile southeast from Bristol Ferry, at the south end of a pond that opened into Mt. Hope Bay, which the settlers dignified by the name of Portsmouth Harbor. The pond still retains the name of the town pond, and ebbs and flows as it did then. The town spring has not ceased to send forth its crystal stream, as in days of yore, to gladden the hearts of men, notwithstanding the crowd of settlers have turned their backs upon it, and left it alone in its glory. To the northeast of the spring a neck of land extends about two miles, which was nearly separated by creeks, marshes and the town pond from the rest of the island. This strip of land, called by the natives Pocasset Neck, was set off by the settlers as a common by running a fence from the south end of the pond to a cove on the east side of the island. This common was called the fenced common, to distinguish it from the lands outside to the south and west of it, which were all common; and the north point then received the name of common fence point, which it still bears, though the reason for its name ceased soon after it was given, and it is now a matter of wonder with many how this name could have originated. These different objects enumerated point out the location of the first settlement upon Rhode Island and the birthplace of Matthew, the third son of Richard Borden, who was born May, 1638, and shows very nearly the time when the first families arrived there. His birth, and those of Richard's other children, born on the island, have been handed down to our times by the records of the Friends' Monthly Meeting at Newport, which further tell us that Matthew Borden, son of Richard, was the first child born of English parents upon Rhode Island. It will here be noted that the birth of Matthew occurred so early in 1638 that it must have been at the place of their first settlemnt and not at Newtown, nor yet on the homestead of Richard, since known as the MacCorrie Farm.
In 1639 the settlers concluded to change their location for another about one and one-half miles farther south, on the east side of the island which they called Newtown. There they laid out house lots for a numerous settlement, but the speedy division of the island into farms soon absorbed all the population then in Portsmouth, and the settlement at Newport this year attracted a large portion of the emigrants to that locality. So that Newtown has remained, as the lawyers sometimes say: “In statu quo,” until recently it is beginning to put on the appearance of a neat, quiet, prosperous little country village. It has a Methodist and an Episcopal Church, a post office, and bids fair to become all that its original founders anticipated--only they were about two and a half centuries ahead of the times in their anticipations. This town was not laid out on the narrow, contracted, miserly plan of modern speculators. To every citizen was meted out a lot of five acres on which to place his cottage, cabbage and turnip yard, etc. I see by the record that this was the size of the lot granted to Richard Borden June 10, 1638, at the first station, and I think his lot at Newtown was the same. It was afterward built upon by his son, John, and is still held by his descendant, William Borden.
Richard was one of the men who were appointed to survey the town lots ,and subsequently, 2nd day of the 11th month, 1638, he was appointed on a committee to lay out all the farming lands in Portsmouth. He had previously signed the civil compact October 1, 1638.
The Freeman's oath, which he signed at that time being as follows: “I, Richard Borden, being in God's providence an inhabitant within the jurisdiction of this commonwealth, do freely acknowledge myself to be subject to the government thereof. And therefore do here swear by the great and dreadful name of the Everlasting God that I will be true and faithful to the same with my person and estate, as in equity I am bound, and will also truly endeavor to maintain and preserve all the liberties and privileges thereof, submitting myself to the same. And further, that I will not plot or practice any evil against it, or consent to any that shall do so, but will timely discover and reveal the same to lawful authority now here established for the speedy prevention thereof. Moreover I do solemnly bind myself in the sight of God, that when I shall be called to give my voice touching any such matter of this state in which freemen are to deal, I will give my vote and suffrage as I shall judge in mine own conscience may best conduce and tend to the Publike weal of the Body, so help me God in the Lord, Jesus Christ.”
During Richard's life the town and state records show him to have been a prominent man among his contemporaries in the town and colony. He was frequently called upon to fill important stations. He was a commissioner for Portsmouth for the years 1654, 1655, 1656, 1657--the last year with William Almy, another emigrant from Benenden. He was chosen assistant, or Senator, 1653 and 1654, and September 12, 1654, he was chosen General Treasurer of the Colony, to fill a vacancy. And if we include in our estimate of him the time and labour spent in surveying the town lands and in the performance of the various other duties assigned him by his townsmen, we must regard him as an active, intelligent business man, who would be honored and respected in any community at that time, or at the present day. Indeed, he seems to have entered heartily into all the plans for the improvement of the town and colony with a just appreciation of the responsibility of those who are legislating for posterity and not for partisans of the day; and by a strictly conscientious discharge of his duty toward all, he secured the entire confidence of his fellow citizens.
It is not known at what time he became connected with the Society of Friends; but as all his children were brought up in this connection it must have been at a very early day. But it is certain that he was one of the founders of that society in Portsmouth, and by his activity and pious zeal did much to extend its influence and promote its prosperity. He was also an advocate for peaceful and gentle intercourse among neighbors, and did all in his power to reconcile the differences between the settlers on Rhode Island and those of the plantations at Providence, wishing to bring both parties under the same general government. At first Portsmouth and Newport acted together; and Providence and Warwick had done the same, each party having a separate government. But finally commissioners were chosen by each party, Richard being appointed for Portsmouth, and in a short time a union was effected under the name of “The Colony of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations,” according to the designation contained in a charter obtained by Governor Coddington from Charles I. This old charter has been the basis on which that government has rested from the time this union was formed, until the present constitution was adopted.
But the attention of Richard was not confined to what was passing in the town and colony in which he lived. Great changes were constantly occurring in various sections of the country; new settlements were forming every day, and new grants of large tracts of land designed to form new colonies were made by the King of England, furnishing new openings for settlements or speculation, which kept the people in a feverish state of excitement. Richard was fully informed of these transactions by his son Francis, who had established himself at Shrewsbury in East Jersey, and was induced by him to purchase two shares in a land company in that territory for the purchase of the township of Shrewsbury. The Friends generally throughout New England took a lively interest in this colony on account of the liberal constitution adopted by Sir George Carteret, the owner, and Philip Carteret, the Governor of the new colony, which secured to them and all other persons the free exercise of the rights of conscince, and they hoped to make it a place of refuge to all who were persecuted in the other colonies. This purchase was made near the close of Richard's life, as the grant from the Duke of York to Sir George Carteret bears date June 23, 1664, and Richard died May 23, 1671.
Richard seems to have passed away suddenly at a time when he had not arranged for the disposal of his widely-extended property. When it was announced to him that he had but a short time to live, he requested some of his neighbors to be called in as witnesses, and on their arrival he proceeded to make a “nuncupative will” by declaring what disposition he wished to be made of his property. These declarations were noted down in the presence of the witnesses, and though never revised by the testator, were approved by the Council at Portsmouth July 11, 1671, and established as his lawful will. If the case had not been so urgent, due reflection would have led him to make a more equitable distribution of his property among his children. As it was, the four older sons got nearly the whole and the three younger only forty pounds each, and the three daughters were left almost unprovided for, as also was his widow. But we may charitably hope that these omissions were duly attended to by his son Matthew, the executor, and that the wants of all were abundantly supplied.
The following obituary notice of Richard Borden is copied from the Record of the Friends Monthly Meeting at Newport:
“Richard Borden of Portsmouth, R. I., being one of the first planters of Rhode Island, lived about seventy years and then died at his own house, belonging to Portsmouth. He was buried on the burial ground given by Robert Dennis to the Friends, which is in Portsmouth, and lieth on the left hand of the way that goeth from Portsmouth to Newport, upon the 25th day of the 3rd month, 1671,” old style; June 5, 1671, new style. Joan, the widow of Richard, survived him eighteen years and died July 16, 1688 two years after the death of John Alden, who is supposed to have been the last of the Mavflower's company. She lived long enough to see all her children fully confirmed in what she believed to be the truth and in dying she must have had a happy consciousness that they would do honor to their parental training and cordially unite with their friends in all their plans for the support of religious institutions and the promotion of sound morals among the people at large. She died at the age of 84 years, 6 months. Reckoning back from the dates given us by the Friend's record, Richard was born about 1601, and Joan February 15, 1604.
I have endeavored to place Richard prominently before the minds of his descendants as their ancestor, whose wisdom has placed them in a country abounding in all the blessings of God's providence which can make life desirable and where they and their associates can make their influence felt in the government of the nation. If their liberty is ever trampled upon by the feet of tyrants, it will be because they have become unfaithful to the trust committed to their charge and despised the noblest birthright ever committed to mortals.
Further comments from Weld’s Record of the Borden family:189
From the records at Portsmouth, Rhode Island, we find that Richard Borden was in the year 1638 admitted an inhabitant of the Island of Aquidneck, having submitted himself to the government that is, or shall be established, 1638, May 20--He was allotted five acres.
1639, January 2--He and three others were appointed to survey all lands near about, and to bring in a map or plot of said lands.
1640--He was appointed with four others to lay out lands in Portsmouth.
1641, March 16--Freeman.
1653, May 18--He and seven others were appointed a committee for ripening matters that concern Long Island, and in the case concerning the Dutch.
1661, September 6.--He bought of Shadrack of Providence, land in Providence near Newtokonkonut Hill, containing about 60 acres.
1667--He was one of the original purchasers of lands in New Jersey from certain Indians.
1671, May 31--Will made by Town Council of Portsmouth on testimony concerning the wishes of deceased. Ex. son Matthew. To widow Joan the old house and fire room, with leanto and buttery adjoining, and the little chamber in new house, and porch chamber joining to it; half the use of great hall, porch room below, cellaring and garret of new house for life. To her also firewood yearly, use of thirty fruit trees in orchard that she may choose, liberty to keep fowls about the house not exceeding forty, and all household goods at her disposal. She was to have thirty ewe sheep kept for her, with their profit and increase; fifty other sheep kept to halves, three cows kept and their profit, and to have paid her yearly a good well fed beef, three well fed swine, ten bushels of wheat, twenty bushels of Indian corn, six bushels of barley malt and four barrels of cider. To son Thomas all estate in Providence, lands, goods and chattels (except horse kind, he paying his mother Joan yearly a barrel of pork and firkin of butter. To son Francis, lands in New Jersey. To son John all land about new dwelling house of said John Borden, etc. To son Joseph, £40, within two years after the death of his mother. To son Samuel £40, half in six months after death of father and half in six months after death of mother. To son Benjamin £40 within four years after death of mother. To daughter Mary Cook, £5. To daughter Sarah Holmes, £40, within six months after death of mother. To daughter Amy Borden, £100 at age of twenty-one. To granddaughter, Amy Cook, £10 at age of eighteen. To son Matthew, whole estate after payment of debts and legacies, and if he die without issue said estate not to remain to any brother older. Inventory, £1572, 8s. 9d., viz: 200 sheep, 100 lambs, 4 oxen, 9 cows, 4 three-years, 5 two-years, 7 yearlings, 5 calves; horseflesh in Providence, 60. Four mares on the island, £20, horse £7, 10s; 6 colts, and other horseflesh at New London, £8. Thirty swine, 11 pigs, negro man and woman, £50; 3 negro children, £25; turkeys, geese, fowls, Indian corn, rye, wheat, oats, barley, pease, 2 cheese presses, 6 guns, pewter, 2 swords, 2 feather beds, 2 flock beds, hat case, silver bowl, £3; cider, £2; money, £11; goods, £16; tables, form, settle, chairs, warming pan, books, £10.
On 28 Sep 1625 Richard married Joan Fowle, daughter of Richard Fowle (ca 1569-ca 1631/2) & Mary (1 Aug 1578-ca 1 Aug 1627), in Headcorn, Kent.1 Born on 15 Feb 1604 in Marden, Kent. Joan died in Portsmouth, RI, on 15 Jul 1688; she was 84.100
2227.Mary Borden. Born ca 1598 in Headcorn, Kent.1
On 4 May 1620 Mary married John Roe in Headcorn, Kent.1
2228.William Borden. Born ca 1600 in Headcorn, Kent. William was baptized in Headcorn, Kent, on 1 Jun 1600.1
2229.Anne Borden. Born ca 1603 in Headcorn, Kent. Anne was baptized in Headcorn, Kent, on 26 Apr 1603.1
Anne, or Amy, Borden.
2230.Edward Borden. Born ca 1605 in Headcorn, Kent. Edward was baptized in Headcorn, Kent, on 14 Apr 1605.1
2231.John Borden. Born ca 1606 in Headcorn, Kent. John was baptized in Headcorn, Kent, on 22 Feb 1606/7.1 John died in 1635/6 in Watertown, MA.14
A certificate of conformity, dated 12 May 1635, from the minister of Benenden, county Kent, lists John Borden age 28, Joan Borden 23, Matthew Borden 5, and Elizabeth 3. Soon after they came to New England on the Elizabeth & Ann. John died soon after arriving. His wife married John Gay and his children grew up in the Gay household in Dedham, MA.
By 1627 John married Joanna.14 Joanna died on 14 Aug 1691 in Dedham, MA.14
Joanna first married John Borden, second John Gay.
John and Joanna (———) (Borden) Gay had ten children.190