In 1640 John Swesey had four acres of land in Salem, allotted him on "ye mayne road" (Essex St.). This land extended easterly beyond and included English Lane and subsequently land westerly beyond Daniel's Lane. Its Southern boundary being "ye harbor".
Governor Endicott, the strictest of Puritans in a Puritan colony, expelled all Baptists, Episcopalians, and Quakers. John Swesey was obliged to leave the area. He moved to Setauket on Long Island, where he stayed a short time before moving to Southold on the end of Long Island. He bought land of Rev. John Young, Pastor of the first church founded there. The deed was recorded in Southampton, Long Island.
John Swesey was later joined by his son John. He left his estate in Salem to his son Joseph. In 1650 he had 12 acres or land in Southold. Then in 1655 he went together with some other men and purchased land from the Indians that would become the site for the town of Brookhaven.
Indian Deed To The Town of Brookhaven
Articles of agreement, and a frime bargaine agreed and confirmed betweene the Sachem or Setaucet, Warawacmy, by name, with the joint consent or himself and the next or his kindred, have bargained and sold unto John Scudder, John Swesey, Jonathan Porter, Thomas Mabbs, Roger Cheston, and Thomas Charles, a piece of land, with all medowes, upland, timber trees or whatever benefite or privilege thereunto belonging next adjoining to the bounds of Nesequagg, and from thence, being bounded by a river, or great napock, nearly nemankak, eastward, and bounded next unto Nesequakee bounds, as by trees being marked doth appear also the Sachem, with the consent of his next kindred, hath given free liberty and granted unto the said purchasers free liberty for ther catell to run beeyond the bounds, if occasion be. or to cut timber as far east as they see fitt. And to come once in two years to renew the marks of the bounds and to give the said purchasers, for them, or who they shall put to live there, full free and quiet possession of the siad purchase, without molestation and, if, in case any of the Indians shall wrong the said English, either by their dogs hurting of their catell, or any other wayes that then the Sachem shall se that satisfaction be made, according to the wrong don. So allsoe, of the English doe any wrong to the Indians, that the English shall make them satisfaction. Also the Sachem shall not entertain any strange Indians, or others, near unto us, whereby to do us any wrong, but sha1l timely discover to us any plotting, or hurt, that shall be intended against us, and the like shall we do unto him to the end that Peace may be maintained among us. And for, and in consideration of the said tract, or purchchase or land, we, the said purchasers doe hereby engage ourselves to pay unto the said Sachem the goods as in particular, are written following, within one month from the date hereof, and for the confirmation of the same, have set my hand with the rest or my kindred. Dated the 14 April 1655.
The mark X of Sachem Warawacmy-Charels, Mahew,
Profet, Kelhellacwe, Yayanfysu, Calawancess, Uaskake, Callaven,
Cataus, Ewbeca, Masachus, Wetanek. Given for this purchase were
10 coats, 12 Hoes, 12 Hatchets, 50 muxes, 100 needles, 6 Kettles,
10 Fadom of wampum, 7 chests of powder, one pare childs stockins,
10 pounds of lead, one dozen Knives
Witness, George Tongue-John Cosby
The area or Brookhaven was 207070 acres including bays, harbors, beaches and meadows, or which there were 180,830 acres. Of this territory John Swesey became possessed of valuable holdings which with his other property made him one of the largest landholders in Suffolk County, Long Island.
Peter Minuit bought Manhattan Island for the Dutch in 1626. Be paid the Manhattan Indians beads, cloth, and trinkets worth $24. The area consisted of about 20,000 acres, so I would say that the purchase or Brookhaven may have been even a better bargain at the time than the earlier purchase or Manhattan.
John Swesey's oldest son, Joseph, who was born in England about 1611, died in Salem in 1709. It appears he did not follow in his father's Quaker faith. He was listed as a fisherman or mariner. He would have been living three during the witch trials in 1692.
John's (1) other son John (2) was born in England about 1619, so he was about 10 when he made the voyage to America. He married in Salem around 1648 to Katherine King. She was born in EnglAnd in 1625. She was the daughter or William and Dorothy King of Salem. William King, an English Puritan, age 40, with his wife Dorothy age 34, and five children: Mary age 12, Katherine age 10, William age 8, Hannah age 6 and Samuel age 2, sailed from Weymouth, Dorsetshire, England in March 1635. They settled in Salem where Mr. King was a member of the First Church at Salem and took an active part in the religious controversies of the time. He died around 1650-1651.
John (2) and his wife Katherine moved from Salem to Southold, Long Island around 1650-1652. He sold his holdings, in Salem to his wife's mother per records dated January 14, 1652. John and Katherine became members of the first church founded in Southold in 1650 by Rev. Younge.
John and Katherine had three sons, John (3) born 1651, Joseph (3) born 1653 and Samuel (3) born about 1656, and four daughters, Abagail, Mehitable, Sarah and Mary.
In 1667 John (2) traded part of his woodland and meadow with Barnabas Horton for similar land. "Horton to pay as balance six pounds of good sheep's wool at the next shearing time. In 1675 he is taxed for one head of house, 10 acres, 2 oxen, two cows, one two-years old, one yearling. His father, John (1) was taxed for 12 acres, 6 oxen, 6 cows, one three year old bull five two year olds, one yearling, four horses, and 20 swine.
John Swesey (1) died around 1685 which would make him at least 90 years of age. He must have survived so many hardships and struggles. With the cold winters wild animals, religious persecution, Indians and lack of medical services, he must have had to rely on a lot of self determination and inner strength just to survive. The truth in "survival of the fittest" is proven for someone who lived to 90 in this early America. That many lines of families dropped by the wayside and became extinct is only proof of our assertion that those who did survive possessed the powers of resistance to every foe that beset their pathway.
In about l691 John's (2) wife, Katherine died, and in 1692 John wrote his will.
Will of John Swesey (2)
In the name of God, Amen: I John S. of Southold, in Long Island, in county of Suffolk and in ye Province of New York, being of good and sound memory and calling to mind ye uncertainty of this life, and that I must yield to death when it shall please God, do make, constitute and ordain this my last Will and Testament, hereby revoking and annulling any other or forms of wills by me made either by word or writing.
Imprimis: I give my soul unto God who gave it and my body being dead to be buried, and my worldly, estate (my just debts being paid)- first I give and bestow in name and form following:
Item: I give and bequeath unto my son John my dwelling house and orchard together with the buildings, fencings and other improvements on my home stall and all ye land by me improved southward of ye landwhich my son John hath fenced in containing ye whole breadth of ye land as far as the South Bay-ye other lot westward of it being a second lot with half ye share of ye meadow commonly called "Horton's Meadow", and being another share of meadow at a place called ye "Great Meadow" and also ally my implements of husbandry and other tools.
Item: I give and bequeath to my son Joseph S. one hundred acres of land upon which he is settled lying westward of my son John's land and northward of my son Joseph's home lot, and half of ye above of the great meadow lying on the other side of the river which was formerly John Younge's and also ye other half of ye lot westward of it and my horses in ye woods to be equally divided between my three sons.
Item: I give and bequeath to my son Samuel ye land now in the occupation of my son John lying between my son Joseph's and the house stall which by these presents I have given to my son John; and ye other half of ye above of ye meadow called "Horton's Meadow", with this condition or limitation that my son Samuel shall not have power to sell or dispose of any part or parcel of ye land hereby granted to him, so that if he shall decease without issue ye right of inheritance of ye land shall be to the next proper heir. Also I give to him half of my cattle and the bed and furniture he lyeth on.
Item: I give to my daughter Aldridge and to the heirs of Peter Aidridge deceased one hundred acres of land lying on the north side or the land given to my son Joseph, if there be so much land there, be it more or less.
Item: I give to my youngest daughters Sarah and Mary Swesey ye other half of my cattle to be equally divided between them.
Item: I give and bequeath to my four daughters, Abagail, Mehitable, Sarah and Mary, all my household goods to be equally divided between them.
Item: My will is that consideration of ye lands given to my sons John and Joseph they shall pay to my two youngest daughters Sarah and Mary ye sum of 20 pounds current pay of the country; that is to say, 10 pounds apiece to each of my youngest daughters within two years after my decease.
Item: My will is that Bessie my servant shall be free and set at liberty at my decease and she shall have the bed she lyeth on.
Lastly: I do hereby nominate and appoint John Tuthill of Southold and John Hallett to be the Executors of this Will and Testament.
In witness whereof I do hereunto set my hand and seal ye 20 of May, 1692.
John Swesey (Seal)
Witnessed by us
John (2) died about 14 years later in 1706. He died in Aquebogue, Suffolk County, Long Island, a few miles from Southold.
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