Edward Bates b 26 Nov 1606

From batesplace.org:

Edward Bates arrived in Boston from England September 18, 1633 onboard the Griffin. On that ship were 100 passengers, including Anne Hutchinson who would play a part in his life. Most on the Griffin were likely followers of Reverend John Cotton who had already made his way to Boston. On the passenger list was the Reverend Jonathan Lothrop who had conducted separatist services in Edgerton, Kent and London, and the Rev. Zachariah Symmes of Canterbury, Kent.

 From The Planters of the Commonwealth by Charles Edward Banks: We do not know how much Edward Bates may have been involved in the religious discussion that most likely occurred on the Griffin but we do know that he found something he liked in what Anne Hutchinson had to say, if not then, in the near future. 

Edward came as a servant to Thomas Leverett, [a lawyer Alderman from Boston, England who had come previously with John Cotton and would also be an Elder in the First Church of Boston], but he soon earned his freedom, and became a freeman in 1637. He married Lydia Fairbanks about 1640 in Boston,  and embarked on a brief but colorful life in the new Boston.

Edward was excommunicated and disarmed for heresy as a follower of Anne Hutchinson. She was a strong and good woman who tended the sick, offered aid at birthing and dying, and believed in a personal relationship with God. She led discussions and prayer meetings, infuriating the men clergy who banished her from Massachusetts Bay Colony. Her followers were allowed to remain but were branded “heretics” and allowed no rights or property, including weapons. It must have been a fearful punishment in that society.

Edward eventually recanted and was allowed back into the fold. He is mentioned several times in the Boston Town Records. He was given 14 acres of land on Pullen Poynt (now the town of Winthrop, where a Bates Road still exists). He almost lost the land because he sailed off to Sable Island to hunt instead of tending to the required house building but the town fathers relented and gave him an extension of time.

His only child, John, was born in 1641 and baptized in the First Church of Boston. The date and circumstances of Edward’s death aren’t known, but in 1645 his widow married William Fletcher in Concord.


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