Wood Sisters

James Percival

Male Abt 1630 - 1692  (~ 62 years)


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  • Name James Percival  [1
    Born Abt 1630  ,, England Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Gender Male 
    Died 19 Jan 1691/2  Saconessett, Plymouth Colony, Falmouth County, Massacusetts Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Person ID I509  My Genealogy
    Last Modified 31 Mar 2019 

    Family Mary Rainsford,   b. 01 Apr 1632, Rainsford Island, Boston, Massacusetts Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 12 Apr 1694, Falmouth, Barnstable, Massachusetts Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 62 years) 
    Married Abt Jun 1671  Saconessett, Plymouth Colony, Falmouth County, Massachusetts Find all individuals with events at this location  [2
    Children 
    +1. James Percival,   b. 18 Jan 1678, Sandwich, Barnstable, Massachusetts Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. Nov 1728, East Haddam, Middlesex, Conneticut Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 50 years)
     2. John Percival,   b. 1673, Sandwich, Barnstable County, Massachusetts Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. Aft 03 Apr 1738, Barnstable, Barnstable County, Massachusetts Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age > 65 years)
     3. Elizabeth Percival,   b. 10 Sep 1675, Sandwich, Barnstable County, Massachusetts Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. Bef 1728  (Age < 52 years)
     4. Mary Percival
    Family ID F264  Group Sheet

  • Documents
    James Percival Will
19 Jan 1691/2
    James Percival Will 19 Jan 1691/2
    Massachusetts. Probate Court (Barnstable County) FamilySearch.org
    Probate records v. 1-3 1686-1747, Vol 1, p 57-8, Film #904598, image 41 of 577
    James Percival Inventory
22 March 1691/2
    James Percival Inventory 22 March 1691/2
    Massachusetts. Probate Court (Barnstable County) FamilySearch.org
    Probate records v. 1-3 1686-1747, Vol 1, p 57-8, Film #904598, image 41 of 577

  • Notes 
    • Came to America in 1670

      REF: Gene & Helen Percival family tree

      REF: Florence LaVernia Wood's notes on Percival Line
      James Percival born in Somertshire, England was the son of Sir James Percival, Lord of Eastbury, (according to Mrs. Lloyd and Mr. Hayman). He was born 1615. We no not know when he came to America (1670). He died in Sandwich, Mass. 1691 (Records of town of Sandwich sent by town clerk J. A. Holway, to Miss C. T. Burkham 37 W. 49th St., New York City)
      children
      John b. 1680 m. Mary Bourne, July 3rd, 1703 d. 1738

      REF: A GENEALOGICAL DICTIONARY of THE FIRST SETTLERS OF NEW ENGLAND, SHOWING THREE GENERATIONS OF THOSE WHO CAME BEFORE MAY, 1692, ON THE BASIS OF FARMER'S REGISTER. VOLUME 3 page 393
      PERCIVAL, PASSEVIL, PASSAVIL, or PARCYFULL, and in Col. Rec. PURSUALL, JAMES, Sandwich, had Elizabeth b. 10 Sept. 1675. JAMES, Haddam, possib. s. of the preced. had John, b. 17 Oct. 1706; and Timothy (by w. Abigail), 2 Oct. 1712. JOHN, Barnstable, had Elizabeth b. 22 Feb. 1704; and James, 5 Dec. 1711. Perhaps he was br. of the preced.

      REF: Mayflower Descendant Volume XIV Barnstable County, Mass., Probate Records, pages 118 & 119
      WILL: made Jan 19 1691/2, leaves to wife Mary, sons John and James, daughter Elizabeth, son in law Nathan Bassett; daughter in law Sarah Lewes; overseers to be friends Stephen Skeffe and William Bassett of Sandwich; inventory 22 Mar 1691/2; recorded 23 Mar 1691/2

      In the Plymouth Colony records, Volume V:
      " The court at Plymouth fined James Percival 5 for contempt of authority in not departing from the colony according to order and escaping with one with whom he was sent in reference to going to Virginia to clear himself of suspicion of running away with a boat"

      REF: Ashleys of the Old Colony, pgs xviii-xxii
      Title: Ashley, Robert E., Ashley's of the Old Colony, Descendants of Joseph and Elizabeth (Percival) Ashley of Rochester, Mass.,
      Author: Tracy Ashley Crocker
      Publication: (1981) Gateway Press, Baltimore, C1087, Vol. I.

      James Percival, immigrant, begins his Will made January 19, 1691 as follows:

      "I James Parsivall of Suckenesset," this being the Indian name of that part of the southwestern Cape Cod now known as Falmouth. This town was incorporated June 4, 1686, but the name Falmouth was first used on March 16, 1693.

      WILL: made Jan 19 1691/2, leaves to wife Mary, sons John and James, daughter Elizabeth, son in law Nathan Bassett; daughter in law Sarah Lewes; overseers to be friends Stephen Skeffe and William Bassett of Sandwich; inventory 22 Mar 1691/2; recorded 23 Mar 1691/2

      His permanent home was in Falmouth where he owned much land besides his homestead. He had resided for a while in Virginia and Sandwich, MA but there is no record that he ever owned land in either place or that he was recorded as an inhabitant of Sandwich in any of the records naming the inhabitants of Sandwich.

      The first references to James Percival are in the Plymouth Colony Records, Vol. 5, pgs 53 and 68.

      "Court at Plymouth, March 8, 1670: James Purseval, for his contempt of authority in not departing the colony according to order, and for his making an escape from one with whom he was sent, in reference to his going to Virginnia to clear himself of suspicion of having a hand in running away with a boat, etc., he was required to pay a fine of five pounds."

      July 5, 1671 pg 68, "Whereas 15 shillings in money was taken away from a servant of James Pursvall of Sandwich, who run away, the court orders 8 shillings to be paid to the constable for bringing him to Plymouth and the remainder to be paid to said Pursvall."

      This shows that James Percival, the New England Pioneer, was living in Virginia in 1670.

      James Pursval served on the jury at Plymouth court in 1675. He was a constable in Sandwich in 1677. He witnessed the Will of Thomas Dexter of Sandwich in 1687. It is probable that he was born in England and as his wife Mary Rainsford was baptized in Boston in 1632, it quite probable that he was born at a date not far from that.

      He remained in Sandwich and in 1677 married Mary, widow of William Bassett, daughter of Edward Rainsford of Boston. He was permitted to take land in the eastern part of Falmouth about 1685. In 1685 he would have been 70 and hardly a desireable pioneer settler.

      It appears that he did not own land in Virginia and from the fact that he acquired much land in Falmouth, MA, he probably would have been a land owner in Virginia if he had lived there more than two years. And as his name is not recorded among those early Virginian immigrants, it seems reasonable to conclude that he probably arrived in Virginia between 1668 and 1670, at which latter date he arrived in Sandwich from Virginia.

      There is a tradition that he was descended from Lord and Lady Percival, but this is indefinite. There is little doubt, however, but that James Percival was descended through lines not recorded or not yet discovered from Richard Perceval, the Crusader, who died soon after 1194 and was buried in Weston, Somerset, England.

      Ashleys of the Old Colony, pgs xviii-xxii

    • Probate records
      Massachusetts. Probate Court (Barnstable County) FamilySearch.org
      Probate records v. 1-3 1686-1747, Vol 1, p 57, Film #904598, image 41 of 577
      "I James Parsivall of Suckenessit in the county of Barnestable in ye Colony of New Plimouth ... bequeath unto mary my wife the use of my dwelling house at Saconessett and my out housing and all ye yards and Enclosuers about my house and ye four Acre Lott that is my Corne field lying nere my dwelling house togeather with all my meadow Lying on and about ye Neck called nomenecent Neck and so much of my meadow at pasontacoy neck as will yield yearly five Load of hay and Liberty to cutt wood for her use off from my fifty acre Lott nere ye dwelling house all which Lands fire wood and meadow ground she ... is to have ... during ye time of her natural Life and ye use of sd housing during ye time of widowhood" also " one third part of all my moveable estate to be at her whole and sold disposall"
      "unto my son John ... two thirds of all my Lands and meadow ground on and about ye Necks called pasontoacoy and manahant neckes: except one quarter part of ye meadow of both; And ye other one third of both sd necks excepting as a aforesd I will and bequeath unto my grandson John williams that dwells with me Son of mary Bassett deceased ... that is to say, when a devition is made by persons Indifferantly Chosen of my Right in both Neckes that then my Son John parsivall shall take his Choice of two thirds there of And I also will and bequeath to him ye sd John Williams ye mare that he usually Rids on and Calls his mare and one Cow and five goats:"
      "unto my Son in Law Nathan Bassett all my Smiths Tools and one Cow and five sheep:"
      "to my wife I give my gray mare and to my Son John I give ye mare that he usually Rids on and Calls his mare:"
      "unto my son James parsivall all ye Rest of my up lands and meadow grounds in and about Saconessitt only excepting my last devition of out Lands and my Lands in Little woodsis hole Neck: and that my will is that mary my sd wife Shall Sell and give deeds of and ye money or produce thereof to pay my debts with and ye charge of my funeral"
      "unto my Daughter Elizabeth my Black mare and three Cowes
      and one bedd and beding to it and one pott"
      "more to my Son James my sd housing and Lands that my sd wife hath ye Improvement of during her Life: he to enter upon and possess them after ye decease of my sd wife: only he to pay my sd daughter Elizabeth ten pounds in Currant passable pay within two years after he enters in to ye possession thereof:"
      "to my Daughter in Law Sarah Lewes one cow and five goats:"
      "after my debts and sd Legasies are paid out of my moveable Estate and when my wife hath her third part thereof then ye Rest Shall be equally divided between my said two Sons viz John and James parsivall:"
      "mary my said wife to be Sole Executrix" and "my Loving frinds mr Stephen Skeffe and william Bassettboth of Sandwich to be overseers of this my will" ... "sett my hand and seal this 19th day of 1691/2. James Parsivall"
      John Smith, Samuel Prince, Stephen Skiffe and William Bassett witnesses and recorded 25 April 1692 by the Recorder Joseph Lothrop.

      [p.58] "An Invintory of ye estate of Liut James parsivall Late of Saconessett deceased" was taken March 22nd 1691/2 by William Wyatt and Joseph Hatch. Among the items are: "2 guns and cutlase at 2 5s ... his Smith tools ax" 5"; "his Lands besids that wich is about ye house several parcels"; "one half of Nomenecont neck or something better"; "pasantacoy neck and all ye upland and most of ye meadow"; "one halfe of manahannt Neck both upland and meadow"; "One Lott att Little woodsis hole"; "And ye out Lands of ye Last devition"; The value of the real estate was not stated.
      "mary Parsivall Relict of ye above Named James Parsivall" made oath to the inventory 23 Mar 1691/2, before Thomas Hinckley, Govenor, Barnabas Lothrop, Assistant, and Stephen Skeffe, County Magistrate. It was entered 26, April 1692, by Joseph Lothrop, Recorder.
      Mayflower Descendant: A Magazine of Pilgrim Genealogy and History. Boston, MA: Massachusetts Society of Mayflower Descendants, 1899- . (Online database: AmericanAncestors.org, New England Historic Genealogical Society, 2010), Vol 14, p118-9.
      https://www.americanancestors.org/DB407/i/12339/119/138140695

    • "John Williams grandson of James Percival"
      The New England Historical and Genealogical Register. Boston, MA: New England Historic Genealogical Society, 1847-. (Online database: AmericanAncestors.org, New England Historic Genealogical Society, 2001-2018.) Vol 141, pp251-4
      https://www.americanancestors.org/DB202/i/11613/251/23550196
      Interesting article that clarifies who John Williams was. Most likely an out-of-wedlock birth by Susannah Turner and John Williams and who was adopted by James' daughter Mary Bassett.

    • Timeline
      Unknown: Arrives in Virginia
      By 1670: Settled in Sandwich, MA
      In 1670 the authorities of Virginia demanded from the authorities of Plymouth, Mass. the extradition of James Percival, accused of having run away from Virginia with a boat. This boat must have been of some size, for Percival reached Cape Cod in her. It is manifest he could not have navigated her alone. Records do not mention any of Percival's companions in the voyage, but it is possible that John Isham was one of them. There were Ishams in Virginia other than Henry Isham of Henrico county, who left descendants in the female line. ......It may well be that John Isham was the son or grandson of some Virginia planter named Isham, and that he went with James Percival to Cape Cod in his runaway vessel. About 1670 times were very hard in Virginia and there were in addition political difficulties and antagonisms. These unfortunate conditions led some to escape from the colony and a few succeeded. It should be stated that James Percival was not compelled to return to Virginia, and was allowed to settle in Barnstable or Sandwich, where he married a prominent widow, Mrs. Mary Bassett, and was by two sons, the founder of the Percival family in New England.
      1670-1 March 8: "James Pursevall, for his contempt of authoritie in nott departing the colonie according to order, and for his making an escape from one with whome hee was sent, in reference to his goeing to Verginnia to cleare himselfe of suspicion hauing a hand in runing away with a boate, &e, he was centanced to pay a fine of fiue pound." [Records of the colony of New Plymouth, in New England, Vol 5, p53, Archives.org]

      1671: James married Mary (Rainsford) Bassett

      1671 July 5: "Whereas fifteen shillings mony was taken away by the Gour from a servant of James Pursvall, of Sandwich, whoe run away, the Court orders eight shillings of the said mony to be payed to the Constable of Bridgewater, for his paynes in bringing him to Plymouth, and the remainder was returned by Mr Bourne to Pursvall." [Records of the colony of New Plymouth, in New England, p68, Archives.org]

      1672 July 5: James Percival's household was in Sandwich based on the court records requiring John Williams to pay to "James Pursevall" for child support. [PCR 5:94]

      Abt 1673: John born in Sandwich, MA

      1675 Sep 10: Elizabeth born in Sandwich, MA

      1677 June 5: "James Pursuall" appointed constable of Sandwich. [Records of the colony of New Plymouth, in New England, p231, Archives.org]

      1678 Jan 18: James born in Sandwich, MA

      1679: Land was assigned to him in 1679 in Succonessett (Falmouth) opposite Martha's Vinyard.

      1681: He settled in the Ashumet section of Falmouth, MA (by the pond) by 1681.

      1685: He was permitted to take land in the eastern part of Falmouth.

      1687: He witnessed the Will of Thomas Dexter of Sandwich

      1691/2 Jan 19: James signed his will

      1691/2 Between Jan 19 and March 22: James died (Inventory taken March 22, 1691/2


  • Sources 
    1. [S110] Old Colony Ashleys, The Desc's. Abraham and Joseph Ashley of Rochester, Mass, Robert E. Ashley, (Name: 1976;), 7.

    2. [S132] The Great Migration Begins, Immigrants to New England, 1620-1633, Volumes I-III. (Online database: AmericanAncestors.org, New England Historic Genealogical Society, 2010), Robert Charles Anderson, (Name: New England Historic Genealogical Society; Location: Originally Published: Boston; Date: 1995;), p 129.