Sunday, September 21, 2014

Getting Outta Debt, the Colonial Way

I just wanted to see how many people would visit this blog with the most popular subject line on the net, Getting Out Of Debt, hahaha. Sorry folks for the laughter at your expense, I truly didn't mean it. But this blog IS about a woman getting out of debt, just a little dated is all.

I am quite certain this wouldn't work today but many generations ago, from the Puritan era to the late colonial era(ca. 1790), some types of women could get out of debt easy enough if they had "daring-do".

A Colonial smock-Courtesy of
It started in Old England with the custom of Smock marriages brought over by the English settlers of New England. Widows were often the women who chose to enter into a Smock Marriage, sometime called Shift Marriages. By todays standards, they would be considered overly dressed, but during the early days of New England immigration, women wouldn't be seen without their caps on their heads, let along a ragged, loose-fitting over-garment called a smock and nothing else. A smock was worn by all women during this period, much like a summer dress, protecting her clothes from her everyday work such as cooking, cleaning and oftentimes, butchering. At times, a shift was worn, which essentially was an undergarment of the same material and coverage.

In a nutshell, a woman would don her smock, wait until nightfall, usually around midnight, and cross a major "highway" a few times and be wedded by a minister. It was best for this ceremony to occur at the intersection of three roads, but because here in New England, settlements were few and far between, a two road intersection was appropriate. And if your settlement didn't have but one road, then that was deemed sufficient. The best possible scenario for a shift/smock marriage was at the crossroads of four major thoroughfares. Such was the case in Rhode Island, at the intersection of Slocum and Stony Fort Roads where three towns met, Exeter, North Kingstown and South Kingstown. This intersection was referred to for many generations as Shift corners.
this practice began, as mentioned, in early Mother England. Some have speculated that by having a woman show up in nothing but her shift/smock, she brings nothing to the marriage, no money or debt. If a wealthy widow had inherited some money from her previous marriage, she would still agree to a smock marriage, having the groom agree that he would accept her the way she was before her inheritance and/or she was willing to give up claim to her property for this marriage. During this time, husbands automatically took claim to a woman's property at marriage. This type of marriage also absolved the groom to be of nay debts from a previous husband as well.
                                                   A colonial shift- Courtesy of

From the Vital Records of Barnstable, Massachusetts:
"Nathan Noyes & Mehitable Bangs wid: Sept 20 1750 ye Bride Setting
in ye Bed ye Bridegroom Declared before ye witnesses present that
he took her in her Shift as She was, having never Received
anything of her former Husbands Estate nor expecting to Receive
Any and that he would not pay any of ye debts of it - This
Returned on ye Back of ye Certificate Pr Mr Green Attest David
Crocker Town Clerk."

Here are but a few more examples of just such marriages:


"On March 11, 1717, did Phillip Shearman Take the Widow Hannah Clarke in her Shift, without any other Apparel, and let her across the Highway, as the Law directs in such Cases and was then married according to law by me. William Hall, Justice"

"There is an ancient registration book of births, deaths, and marriages at the handsome new town Thomas Calverwell was joyned in marriage to Abigail Claverwell his wife the 22, February, 1719-20. Hi took her in marriage after she had gone four times across the highway in only her shift and hairlace and no other clothing, Joyned together in marriage by me. Geo. Hazard, Justice."

" In 1780, David Lewis married at Hopkinton, Widow Jemima Hill, "where four roads meet," at midnight, she being dressed only in her shift. This was to avoid payment of Husband Hill's debts. Ten years later, in a neighboring town, Richmond, still in the South county, Widow Sarah Collins appeared in the twilight in a long shift, a special wedding shift covering her to her feet, and was then and thus married to Thomas Kenyon at Hopkinton."


"To all People whom It May Concern. This Certifies that Nathanell Bundy of Westerly took ye Widow Mary Parmenter of sd. town on ye highway with no other clothing but shifting or smock on ye Evening of ye 20 day of April, 1724, and was joined together in that honorable Estate of matrimony in ye presence of John Sander, justice."



Now if the bride to be was riddled with debt, the reason for her to cross the road at least three times was to ensure that any debt collector that may have been hiding, only to pounce on the groom and bride at the right moment, were around, he would surely show himself the first or second time. If she crossed the road three times and nobody showed up to collect, she was ready to marry.

There are many documented circumstances of this type of marriage being undertaken throughout New England as well as New York, even in the daytime. In order to preserve the meaning of this type of debt absolution, and nightfall couldn't wait, then another type of smock marriage was performed.

A bride to be simply hide in a closet and extended her hard through a curtain for the marriage ceremony. After, she was handed her wedding attire, dressed herself in this closet and joined in the festivities. This practice was used in the winter as well, although not all the time.

In the "History of Wells and Kennebunkport", there is recorded a smock married of widow Mary Bradley. She and the groom decided instead of a smock marriage in the home during a winter storm, they decided to do it the old fashioned way, outside. The minister felt so sorry for the bride that he removed his own coat and draped it around her


In the book "History of Eastern Vermont", there is a passage written of a marriage in Westminster, Vermont, in which the widow Lovejoy, nude and hiding in a chimney recess married Asa Averill.


Here is a rather odd example from 1784 Manhattan:

"One day a malefactor was to be executed on a gallows; but with a condition that if any woman, having nothing on but her shift, married the man under the gallows, his life was to be saved. This extraordinary privilege was claimed; a woman presented herself, and the marriage ceremony was performed."

Hannah Ward married Major Moses(b. 1741 in MA) Joy as she was sitting in her closet completely naked, with her hand stuck out a hole.

Early America saw more than a few of these, too. The most famous is Hannah Ward Taft, who married Major Moses Joy in 1790 at Vermont while completely naked. She stood in a closet with a hole cut in the door through which she could stick out her hand and take his. At least nobody saw her particular parts.


Here is a link to a story on Smock marriages from the Tryon Daily Bulletin of North Carolina, 1922.

Monday, September 15, 2014

Simple! Simple! Simple!

Real New England Clam Chowder

Want real Chowder from a real New England, third generation, chef and without "fancified" herbs and seasoning? Want a chowder that screams crackers and napkins? This is it! Enough already with trying to prove that a Yankee Chowder needs 20 ingredients. There is a reason this dish has withstood generations here on the East coast and will continue to for many more to come. Hot, milky, highly flavorful and simply prepared. To me, and many other Downeast families, this is the epitome of comfort food. So make it as is and eat it, will ya'?



1 pound baking(russet) potatoes, peeled and diced

2 strips bacon, diced

1/2 small onion, minced

1 bay leaf

1 can chopped clams, drained

1 bottle clam juice

2 cups half-and-half or light cream


In a large saucepan, add the diced bacon and cook over medium heat, stirring often, until just starting to crisp. Add the onions and continue cooking and stirring until the onions are softened but still firm. Drain the fat from the pan and add the diced potatoes. Add clam juice and enough water to cover by 2-inches. And don't forget the bay leaf. Boil for 5-6 minutes, or until potatoes are fork soft, but not mushy. Add half-and-half and the clams, stir to combine and heat to scalding. Remove from heat, stir gently once again and serve immediately. But to be honest, I love my chowder made a day ahead of time and reheated the following day. You can remove the bay leaf if desired, but you won't get kissed.


Simple and Creamy Maine Corn Chowder

Some people may say "Jim, your recipes are too simple!". I am proud of that because I have noticed more and more of the younger generation can't make even gravy and chowders, let alone a full meal. So here is another New England classic that I hope you enjoy in the simplicity of it, but with the flavor that will warm your insides in the upcoming winter. This is the second recipe for corn chowder I have given you. The first involved more bacon and onion, so choose for yourself which you would like to prepare, both are equally delicious. As for the name chowder? Many food historians have alluded to the word chowder as being a derivative of 'chaudiere", a pot used on fishing vessels by the French during the 17th century. I believe it is a dialectical result of Jowter, which was an old English fish peddler. Hence the first chowders made here in New England was fish chowder.

1 pound baking(russet) potatoes, peeled and diced

2 strips bacon, diced

1/2 small onion, minced

1(15-ounce) can cream-style corn

1 cup carrot juice

2 cups half-and-half or light crea1 tablespoon butter or margarine


In a large saucepan, add the diced bacon and cook over medium heat, stirring often, until just starting to crisp. Add the onions ad continue cooking and stirring until the onions are softened but still firm. Drain the fat from the pan and add the diced potatoes. Add enough water to cover by 2-inches. Boil for 5-6 minutes, or until potatoes are fork soft, but not mushy. Add half-and-half, creamed corn, carrot juice and butter, stir to combine and heat to scalding. Remove from heat, stir gently once again and serve immediately.




Common Crackers

You don't find Common Crackers much anymore and that is a shame. When making chowder at home, take a few(very few) minutes and make these original crackers that our fore-mothers made only for the chowder-laden table. In essence, they are a very thin biscuit that has been cooked until crisp. Many old cookbooks say to soak your Common Crackers in milk before adding them to your chowder. Kind of defeats the purpose, don't you think? Regardless, They absorb chowder at just the right speed without becoming soggy before you finish.

2 cups flour

1 tablespoon sugar

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 cup cold butter or margarine

1/2-3/4 cup milk

Preheat oven to 425-degrees F. In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, salt and baking powder. Add the butter and work it in with the tips of your fingers until the bits are half the size of peas. Add 1/2 cup milk, blending together to form a soft dough. Add more milk if needed.

Turn out onto a floured work surface. With plenty of flour, knead for a minute and flatten out with the palms of your hands. With a floured rolling pin, roll out to about 1/4-inch thickness. Using the rim of a water glass, your preference in size, dip the glass in flour and cut out rounds of the dough. Place on an ungreased cookie sheet. Keep cutting and gathering up pieces of dough leftover from your cuttings until dough is used completely. Brush off excess flour from the tops of each cracker. Bake for 12-14 minutes, or until well browned. Remove from oven and transfer onto wire racks or a paper towel-lined platter to cool.

Monday, September 8, 2014

And The Winners Are..............

First checkout!chili-chowder-challenge/cldl for the winners of the Chili-Chowder Challenge this past week in Boothbay, Maine. It was the past 10 days that they celebrated their 250th birthday but had many events were enjoyed but the multitudes of people. Not the least being, in my opinion, visiting all the businesses and meeting everyone. I couldn't believe how genuinely pleasant everyone was and the food?!?!...........Outrageously delicious.

And that brings us to the Chili/chowder Challenge. There really isn't anything I can say negative about any of the contestants. All put their best in order to be crowned the best in the region. Certainly there were some faux-pas's, but nothing that would have turned me away. I tasted a variety of chili's that reflected ones own personal touch, and taste, but to play the devils advocate, I needed to judge the best overall recipe that reflected the true taste and texture in which a particular dish represented. If the judging had a category for Most Original or Most Unique, than the choice would have been more difficult.

The method I used in both Chowder and Chili tastings was simple and I use it in every competition I judge that requires it. I wanted a chili that represented the basic and classic representation.

Chili Con Carne had to have the right amount of meat in proportion to other ingredients. The heat needed to be present, yet not ruin my taste buds for the other flavors that should be present in a all classic chilies. Now I know everyone has their own version of what is the appropriate heat level, and I will be honest in telling you that I sweat eating barbecue chips. Sure my resistance to heat in any form is low but I put my personal taste aside and judge on unbiased criteria. Although my heat tolerance may be low, I am easily able to distinguish between levels of spice and judge accordingly. I also didn't want to eat my chili with a fork, yet be thick enough for any of the ingredients to just barely hang on without falling off the spoon. 

For the chowder, since this was a New England chowder competition AND on the coast of Maine, I was more intent of a chowder that represented both in a classic sense. I wanted the perfect chowder, without any off-taste of old fish, rubbery clams or to taste milk that didn't have the taste of either. I wanted a chowder that was the perfect vehicle for crackers. Not the soft saltines but something that would have slowly soaked into the old Crown Pilots or Common Cracker.

Did I find a winner in either category that withstood my strict standards? You bet!! Not only did I find the winners but the general public who voted for their best in each category, and they were eerily close to mine.

                                                          Watershed Tavern

My choice of the best chowder went to the Watershed Tavern . I gave them a 9.9 out of a possible 10. See my review at I have let them know the one thing that would have propelled them to 10, but this will be between them and me. Regardless, I urge everyone and anyone that happens to be in the area to visit this remarkable pub and restaurant. Heck, make that special trip just to enjoy their chowder. Perfect in consistency, perfect fish flavor and reminiscent of what a true chowder should be here in New England.

At the same time, their chili was killer. The heat was at a level that hit me at the beginning of each bite and almost entirely left my tongue before scooping up that next, chunky bite. I gave them a 9 out of 10. Again, well worth the trip to this business just for either dish.


The best chili I judged went to Kalers . Hands down, the perfect chili with a rating of 10. Perfection with every mouthful, and I did take some mouthfuls. ordinarily, I take just small bites to judge because by the end of the 4th or 5th sampling, both my belly and mind need a break. I simply couldn't put the cup down so I polished it off post haste. Kalers, I commend you on a job well done.

For the peoples choice, they chose Whales Tale Restaurant for the winner, two years in a row. This restaurant was my second choice, giving them a 9 out of a possible 10 rating. I can see how they have ranked so high both years and thank them very much for a sincerely delicious chowder that was quite memorable.

The peoples choice for the best chili went to Capers Deli. They ranked a 9 out of 10 for me. Great flavor, great heat and a great job, that was ob\vious from the first spoonful to the last.


This was an enjoyable tasting and I can proudly proclaim that any of these chowders and chilies could have competed on a national level. I can also aver that the Watershed Taverns chowder was probably the best chowder I have eaten anywhere, when it comes to the original and classic presentation of this New England culinary cornerstone.

Sunday, August 31, 2014

Boothbay.....All The Way!

I just spent the best two days of judging since I began my food competition circuit years ago. I have judged New England chowders all over the United States including New York believe it or not, and I must say that Mainah's just have a way with chowder. Not to give a back seat to the chili recipes I also judged, but there is just something ingrained in a Yankee that plain loves milk-based chowder. And in Boothbay Harbor, those fishermen and fishermen's wives certainly know how to reel us in. In all fairness however(and a little "truth be told") many other people that aren't "of the sea" or in the restaurant industry whipped up their own version of chili and chowder that truly tempted me to take more than a taste. But from experience and many upset stomachs later, I have learned to curtail my ingestion of creamy chowder and spicy chili so that I can get through each and every entrant.

And that brings me to the entrants. I have never felt so welcomed anywhere than I did in this Downeast area of Maine. Although the old adage holds true that there will always be a bad apple in the lot, I constantly was on the lookout for that one sourpuss who wasn't a people person or simply didn't want to put on a smile. Heck, I even prompted someone to grimace in my own, dry Yankee style, but nobody would have any of it. Regardless of my "pushing their buttons" at times, I walked away with both happiness and "I'll get the next one" attitude. Every single shop owner, restaurant chef, retail clerk and even the tourists, seemed happy to be where they were and rubbing elbows with everyone that crammed into their shops and accidentally bumped into them.

Not only did I have to judge food, but I was also a judge for the displays that many businesses set up in front of their shops. From adolescnet girls in lobster costumes to all out decorations that involved a 20 gallon martini glass, it was all just such a great way to spend a sun-filled weekend on the coast.

But my main object of participation was to taste the chowders and chili's. And staying on track was very difficult. The restaurants, individuals and businesses that contributed to my tasting frenzy and set up beautiful displays included:

(Go ahead, safely click on each of these places to take you to their website or FB page. Beautiful places)

Mine Oyster


Smiling Cow

Jansons Clothing

Coastal Maine Popcorn Company

Silver Lining

Sadie Greenes

Andrew's Harborside Restaurant


Harbor Optical

2 Salty Dogs

Casual Interiors


Gold/Smith Gallery


Coco Vivo

Boothbay Region Greenhouse

Whales Tale

Rocktide Inn

Robinson's Wharf

                                                                                   Watershed Tavern

Fisherman's Wharf Inn and Restaurant


I cannot tell you the winner until it is announced next weekend but I will tell you that the winner of the chowder challange is a chowder that I have never had the equal of. I have tasted chowder all over the United States and have judged some chowders from the finest, upscale restaurants in this country, but it was this one recipe in a little town in Maine that won my palate becaue of the one ingredient that many chowder makers never put in anymore. Along with that ingredient, the consistency was perfect for the classic preparation of this New England....well, classic chowder.

The best chili was one of the best I have eaten as well. With that hint of spice that stuck around just long enough to let you know it was there, but not altering the flavor and heat of the next bite.

Please come back next weekend to see who the winner is for best chowder, chili and decoration. Not only will I give you the winners, but my thoughts for those that didn't place. I know, I know. Us Mainah's are never good at taking constructive criticism, but if these folks accept what I have to say with the same gracious and dignified way they treated me while I was down there, maybe that sour, dry, stubborn and unforgiving attitude that Yankee's are known for just may be on the way out.

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Sufferin' Succotash

Ever give it much thought when Sylvester blurted out that phrase whenever he didn't get his way?

There has been so much written about Succotash and, as in genealogy, there is a lot of half truths. While many "authorities" say that Succotash comes from the Algonquin misckquatash, I don't believe that to be the case. See my article on corn at

In the meantime, Succotash is a great, original American Indian dish that our fore-families have enjoyed for centuries. This dish is made mostly during the Holiday times of year, which is not understood by me. It was eaten at all times of the year, whether it was when the corn was ripe to eat or in the middle of winter when they had to use their dried corn and beans.

Although fava and lima beans were the original beans used for this dish, I have substituted Great Northern, only because my kids won't touch either one of the other two. Clabbard, or Clapboard, beans were used during the 18th and 19th centuries more often than not as well.

I have also used a variety of vegetables in this Yankee staple too, but have omitted any protein, although the Indians and colonists used whatever meat or fish they had on hand. Succotash is great by itself as a side dish or as a base for meat or fish. It is as tasty as it is colorful.

Enjoy these three recipes that highlight our heritage and simplicity as well as being the original colony of comfort foods, the New England colony.

Creamy New England Succotash

Without going into a long spiel about the beginnings of Succotash and variations over the years, I will simply tell you this is probably as good of a true Yankee dish as you are going to enjoy. True Succotash used chicken, pork or whatever protein the family had and cooked it with beans, corn and onion. They would then add some milk to the pot and let it get a little thick before serving it to their family. I have added some more vegetables but have kept the true recipe intact. I think you will enjoy this trip back in time, with a modern approach.

3 strips bacon, diced
1 small summer squash, diced*
1 small zucchini, diced
1/2 cup red bell pepper, minced
1/4 cup minced onion
2 cups milk
1/2 cup sour cream
1 1/2 cups whole kernel corn
1 cup cooked navy beans
Salt and pepper to taste

In a large skillet or pot, cook bacon over medium heat until crispy. Leaving the bacon and fat in the pan, add the squash, zucchini, bell pepper and onion. Stirring occasionally, cook until vegetables are crisp tender. In a bowl, whisk together the milk and sour cream until well incorporated; set aside.

Add the corn, beans and milk mixture and salt and pepper to taste. continue cooking, stirring occasionally still, until everything is heated through and most of the liquid has been absorbed, another 5-7 minutes.

*or use zucchini or a combination of each

Cheesy Succotash Grill

Want a great and filling grilled cheese sandwich that is truly filling? Here it is, and using Succotash ingredients gives you the satisfaction of protein without the fat. As you know, Succotash has been around for centuries here in New England and many moons before us Europeans coming over. This is, yet again, one of the true, great food gifts bestowed upon us from the Native Americans.

2 small pita breads

Pumpkin Mayonnaise, recipe below
Nonstick cooking spray
1 cup shredded Pepperjack cheese
1 cup whole kernel corn
1/2 small diced tomato
1/4 cup diced onion
1/2 cup cooked great northern beans*
1/2 cup diced, cooked chicken


With a sharp knife, insert it into the pita bread and cut around it to form two thin halves. Repeat with other pita. In a small bowl, mix 1/4 cup mayonnaise with 2 tablespoons pumpkin, 1/2 teaspoon chili powder, 1/4 teaspoon cumin, 1/4 teaspoon salt and black pepper; mix well; set aside. Spray the outer outer half of two pitas and place in a large skillet over medium-low heat. Spread some Pumpkin Mayonnaise and top with equal amounts of half the cheese, corn, tomato, onion, beans and chicken. Sprinkle remainder of the cheese over both and top with the other halves of the pita, with more Pumpkin Mayonnaise spread over each. Cook, flattening down with a spatula, until it is starting to crisp. Carefully flip over to finish crisping on the other side. Remove and enjoy.

*Lima, fava, kidney or cooked pinto beans would be equally delicious

Tempting Jagasse

Not many people know, or even heard, of Jagasse. In the early 1800s, fishermen along the Massachusetts coast were also farmers in their 'non-fishing' time. Of course their families had their fill of fish in meals and this dish gave them a subtle hint of the ocean while enjoying the bounty of the garden as well. They used whole fish in their Jagasse, but just the hint of the ocean is all that is needed in this delicious, original Yankee recipe derived from Succotash.

2 strips bacon, diced
1 cup fish broth or clam juice
1/2 small summer squash, diced*
1/2 small zucchini, diced
1 cup whole kernel corn
1/2 cup red bell pepper, minced
1/4 cup minced onion
1 cup cooked navy beans
2 cups cooked rice
1(15-ounce) can tomato sauce
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
Salt and black pepper to taste


In a large pot, add the bacon and cook until crispy over medium heat. With the bacon and fat still in pot, add the fish broth. Boil for 3 minutes before adding the squash, zucchini, corn, red bell pepper and onion. Stirring occasionally, cook until the vegetables are just barely tender. Add beans, rice, tomato sauce, garlic and onion powders, red pepper and salt and pepper to taste. Stir to combine and continue cooking until everything is heated through.


Enough for 4 side dishes


Monday, August 18, 2014

Continuing with Early New England Settlers, 1600-1700

Besbedge, Besbitch or Beesbeech

Thomas came from Kent, England to Scituate, Mass, in 1635, then to Duxbury and finally to Sudbury, Mass..


Besse or Bessey

Anthony was at Lynn in 1635, then to Sandwich in 1637.



John was a tailor who came from St. George, Canterbury, England in 1630.

Robert was at Sudbury pre-1635.



John, born 1594 and came to N.E. in 1634. Was at Cambridge and Lexington within a year or two

John, was at Charlestown, Mass. on 1678

Richard came from Hemel Hempstead, Hertsfordshire to Ipswich in 1648, then to Newtown, L.I. in 1656

Roger was at New Haven, Conn. in 1644, then to Branford, Conn. in 1646.

Samuel, brother of preceding, was at Branford, Conn. in 1679.

Thomas, born 1618 came in 1639. He was a founder of Guilfrod, Conn. in 1650 then went to Milford, Conn. in 1658, ending at Norwalk in 1664.

William, was at Barnstable in 1635 then to Scituate and Dorchester.



James was at Salem in 1661.


Bevans or Bevens

Arthur was at Glastonbury, Conn. in 1697 when he died.

Benjamin was at Farmington, Conn. pre-1688

Rowland, was at Boston pre-1660


Bewett, Buet or Buitt

George was at Sandwich, Mass. in 1643

Hugh was banished from Mass. because of his quakerism in 1640, settling in Providence, R.I..



John, was at Boston in 1637 then to Malden, Mass. in 1644.



Thomas, came to New England in 1635



John was at Weymouth pre-1651

Zachary was born in 1590 and brought his only son, John(aged 11) in 1635. He died in 1636 at Weymouth.


Bicknor or Bickner

Thomas was at Charlestown pre-1635

William was at Charrlestown in 1658 and died in 1659



John was at Hartford in 1639

Joseph was at Marshfield, Mass. in 1636 but left no issue.


Bidfield, Bedfield or Betfield

Samuel was at Boston in 1641

Bidgood or Betgood

Boston was at Ipswich in 1642



Richard was at Windsor, Conn. and died there in 1647



John was the son of Randle Baguley of Wrentham, Suffolk and born in 1617. He came to Watertown, Mass. in 1642                                                                    A 1605 map drawn by Samuel Des Champlain


Biggs or Bigg

John came with Winthrop in 1630, then to Ipswich in 1635, then to Dorchester, Mass. and lastly to Exeter, N.H.

Timothy was at Boston in 1665

William was at Middletown, Conn. in 1681 when he died



John was the son of John and went to Boston in 1635

Thomas was at Boston in 1657



Nathaniel was at Concord, Mass. pre-1640

Richard was at Hartford, Conn. in 1640, then to Hadley in 1661

Roger was at Dorchester, Mass. in 1640

Samuel was at Newport, R.I. in 1658

William came to either Dorchester or Braintree, Mass. in 1640, then to Lancaster, Mass. in 1654, lastly to Stonington, Conn.



John, from the Mayflower, was hung for murder at Boston in 1630

Thomas was at Exeter, N.H. in 1650, then to Taunton in 1662 when he died.


Bills or Billes

Matthew was at Dover, N.H. in 1654

Robert was born in 1602 and went to Charlestown, Mass. in 1635



Thomas(son of Henry) was born in 1642, came to New England with his mother and stepfather William Backus to Saybrook, Connn. in 1658. Went to New London in 1660 then to Norwich, Conn. and Windham by 1693



Thomas was at Boston in 1665

William was at Newbury in 1659



John was at Hull, Mass. pre-1679



Jonas was at Dover, N.H. in 1648



Simon was at Mass. in 1635

Thomas was at Dorchester, Mass. in 1657

Thomas was at Swanzey, Mass in 1684


Birchard or Burchard

Thomas was at Dorchester in 1635, then to Hartford, Conn. and Saybrook in 1650


Jathiel was Ipswich in 1641

Simon was at Boston in 1635, then to Chelsea in 1644. Lastly to Billerica in 1655

Thomas was at Hartford, Conn. pre-1653

Thomas was at Scituate pre-1630

Thmoas was at Dorchester, Mass. in 1640



Giles was at Ipswich in 1648

Tyler, brother or preceding, was at Ipswich in 1648 but his name may been Burley



John came to New Haven, Conn. in 1636



Richard was at Dorchester pre-1636 when he is found as one of the first settlers of Windsor, Conn.

Bisbee(see Besbedge)

Edward was at Beverly, Mass. in 1640

Henry was at New Haven, Conn. in 1644

Henry was at Ipswich pre-1657 when he is found at Boston.

James was at New Haven in 1648

James was at Duxbury, Mass. in 1679

John was at Newbury in 1647 then to Nantucket, Mass. and then Woodbridge, New Jersey

Rev. John was at Taunton in 1640 then to Stamford, Conn. in 1644

John was born in 1600 and was one of the first settlers of Guilford, Conn. in 1639

Nathaniel was at Ipswich in 1634 then to Boston in 1645

Richard was at Salem in 1635

Thomas, brother of Nathaniel, was at Ipswich in 1636

Townsend was at Salem in 1635



James was at Boston in 1668



John was born in 1591 and came to Plymouth in 1628, then to East Windsor, Conn. in 1649



Joseph was of Assington, England was was at Salisbury pre-1647. Then to Ipswich in 1649, ending at Rowley in 1667

Nathaniel was at Ipswich in 1636

Thomas was at Salem in 1636



Daniel was at Boxford, Mass. in 1666

George was at Gloucester, Mass. pre-1658

John was at Charlestown in 1634

Miles was at Sandwich, Mass. in 1643



Walter arrived to New England in 1638 and was at Roxbury and Boston around 1640. He returned to England in 1641



Nicholas was at Newport, R.I. in 1655


                                                                                                                An invite to settle New Jersey
Benjamin was at Cambridge pre-1650

John was at Salem in 1635 then to Boston and Hartford, Conn. and he died at Wethersfield, Conn. in 1683

Richard was born in 1655 and was at Stratford, Conn. in 1685


Blackley, Blakesley or Blakeslee

Samuel was at Hartford, Conn. in 1641, Branford, Conn. in 1645, Guilford, Conn. in 1650 then to New Haven, Conn. in 1655

Thomas came in 1635 and was at Boston until 1641 when he is found at Hartford, Conn., then to New Haven in 1655

Thomas came in 1635 and was at Hartford, Conn. in 1641, then to Branford, Conn. by 1645


Blackman or Blakeman

Rev. Adam was born at Staffordshire in 1598 and came in 1638. He was at Guilford, Conn. in 1640

John was born in 1625 and was at Dorchester, Mass. pre-1640



James was at Providence, R.I. in 1690

William came in 1665 and settled at Scituate



Jeremy came to New England when he was 18 in 1635

Michael (or Myles) was at Sandwich, Mass. in 1643



Henry was at Braintree in 1643, then to Boston in 1653



Henry was at Salisbury in 1657

Ralph was born in 1600 and was at York, Maine in 1637, then to Salisbury in 1640

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

MOTHER Knows Best

Mother of Vinegar that is. Let me 'splain!(Can't tell I was brought up in a certain era, can you?

Apple Cider Vinegar is simply a soured apple cider. Although any liquid that can ferment can be converted to vinegar, it is with pride that we New Englander's grew up with this, most popular, type.

Although most, if not all, definitions of vinegar state that the word vinegar means literally sour wine, this is not true. Sources say that 'vin' means wine and 'aigre', from Old French, means sour. Nope! Although 'vin' does equal wine, 'aigre' is Old French for sharp or biting. So it really isn't so much from sour wine, but from sharp wine. But regardless, it is the soured wine(or cider) that vinegar is derived.

Now this particular post will be a brief talk on true apple cider vinegar, the kind our forefathers and mothers made and used. Raw, unfiltered and unpasteurized apple cider vinegar. The type with the Mother of Vinegar still visible. Although this slimy, floating mass is unappealing in many ways, it is the healthiest part of cider vinegar. This gelatinous film is remarkable in a number of ways:

Want to cut down on your salt intake?
Simply substitute apple cider vinegar for the salt found in many recipes. This works well for any cake, bread or meats. It lessens the sweetness in fruited and berried desserts as well.

Our ancestors took a portion of Mother of Vinegar from each batch and used it to speed up the process of the next batch of cider. Much the same as they took a little piece of bread dough from one days baking to begin the next days bread making. 

During the Civil War, Mother of Vinegar was used to dress and disinfect wounds.

Only found in unpasteurized vinegar, it is the most healthful part of cider vinegar. Used as an antiseptic for eons, is is known to help with ear aches, sunburns and when mixed with water, a great throat gargle.

Speaking of drinks(the best lead-in I can come up with), right up until the early 1900s, when mixed 1 part vinegar, 1 part molasses or sugar and 4 parts water, it was called a Haymakers Switchel. My grandfather and many before him, took this drink many times throughout haying season. And they didn't rely on the mechanical toys of today, I am talking about taking the scythe out in the hot summer sun and “swooshing” through their 'mowing lanes', cutting down the tall grass to dry for hay.

Want to clean your windows the old fashioned way and leave them just as streak free as that blue liquid? Put ½ and ½ vinegar and water and us newspapers.

And there is growing proof that apple cider vinegar is key in weight loss. Scientists have yet to determine exactly how it works but they say it works.

Some evidence newly out refers to making your own vinegar drink(such as the Haymakers Switchel above)and drinking a glass a day to help with type-2 diabetes or for those that are inherent it contracting it.

But first and foremost is the Mother of Vinegar. It truly and I urge everyone to at least check it out. You don't have to do anything with it as is, just shake the bottle up before using. Once you purchase and use, raw, unfiltered, unpasteurized apple cider vinegar, you will never go back to distilled. The taste is phenomenal. No more expensive and much better for you.

It is also effective in killing 0-157 strain of E-coli. And if it that powerful, no wonder world wide attention has been focused on its antibacterial and antimicrobial properties.

As for the life span. It will last 3-5 years if kept out of direct sunlight. Of course it will last much longer but the taste will diminish. “Then why does it have an expiration date on it?” you ask. Because that date only corresponds to the best quality of the vinegar.

Check out Bioscience, Biotechnilogy and Biochemisty, a well respected scientific journal in Japan. They have done extensive testing and experiments. Look them up and see for yourself.

It's Just that Simple!