John Smalley was my 8th great-grandfather:
He arrived in Plymouth Colony (Massachusetts) in 1632 from England. Where and when he was born is not documented. There are many documents from Plymouth Colony that mention John. He served on several juries with William Bradford and Miles Standish, was a tailor and could read and write as he witnessed deeds of others and signed deeds. He was one of several men able to bear arms. He married Ann Walden/Wallen on November 29,1638 in Plymouth Colony although I have not been able to document the date.
In 1644, they “removed” to Eastham on Cape Cod. According to the archives of the Eastham Public Library: “this committee purchased a large tract of land from the Native Americans for ‘moose-skins, Indian boats, wampum, little knives, etc’
John and his family lived in Eastham for several years. He was a surveyor of highways and a constable. For reasons I have not discovered, he moved his family to Piscataway, New Jersey in 1670. He served there as a magistrate. He received a patent in 1675 for 118 acres. He obviously was a successful person and part of the establishment.
According to the “History of Middlesex County, New Jersey, 1664-1920” by John P. Wall, John was one of the original settlers in Piscataway Township.
John Smalley is named as a freeholder and owner of hers or horses and cattle in 1691; and his descendants were mentioned as among the first organizers of the Seventh Day Baptist church in 1720. John died in 1692 and his will is interesting to read considering today’s inflation and value system: He gave most of his household goods to his 2nd son Isaac
Excepting my Armes (viz) my sword & Gun & my wearing Apparell, which I have given to my (oldest) son John Smalley after my decease
Two of his daughters each received one shilling
Three granddaughters received 5 shillings each
Two grandsons got one Heifer between them
“And to my Loveing wife Ann Smallie shall have one Cow to dispose of According to her use & pleasure.” And my reading is not as much confusion as the awful misspellings!
Submitted by Barbara Johnson