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Ezekiel Richardson
Winthrop's Fleet Passenger (1630)
Founder of Charlestown Church (1632)
and Town of Woburn, Massachusetts (1640) 
Researchers: Barbara, Joyce, Kathy, Norris, Terry

Source: The Great Migration Begins – Immigrations to New England, 1620-1633, Vol III P-W, Robert Charles Anderson, New England Historic Genealogical Society, Boston, 1995

Church membership: “Ezekiel Richardson and his wife” admitted to Boston Church as members #80 and #81, which would be in the winter of 1630/1 (BCHR 13); on 14 October 1632 “Ezechiell Richardson and Susan his wife” were dismissed to participate in the organization of Charlestown church (BChR 16); on 2 November 1632 “Ezek:” and “Susan Richeson” were admitted to Charlestown church as founding members (ChChR 7)

Offices: Deputy for Charlestown to General Court, 2 September 1635 (MBCR 1:156). Petit jury, 19 September 1637 (MBCR 1:203). Charlestown member of colony committee on valuation of livestock, 13 May 1640 (MBCR 1:285) Commissioner for small causes at Woburn, 10 May 1643 (MBCR 2:35). Committee to lay out highway between Cambridge and Woburn, 10 May 1643 (MBCR 2:36).

Charlestown selectman, 10 February 1634/5, 12 February 1637/8 (ChTR 13,34). Constable, 3 April 1633 (MBCR 1:104). Committee to lay out lots, 9 January 1633/4, 23 November 1635 (ChTR 10, 17). Committee to lay out highways, 10 February 1737/8, 20 December 1638 (ChTR 12,39, 40). Committee to regulate wages, 28 November 1636 (ChTR 23). Committee on stinting the common, 17 February 1636/7 (ChTR 25).

Estate: In 1635, Ezekiel Richardson surrendered back to the town five acres of land Mystic Side (ChTR 14). In the same year he was granted five shares of hay ground, which was increased to six shares (CrTR 19, 20).

On 24 October 1636 the town of Charlestown “agreed to allow Ezek(ie)ll Richeson 2 acres of ground besides the two due to him, to make & keep two sufficient gates for the highway between Mr. Mayhew’s & New Towne, & the highway to have 6 pole in breadth” (ChTR 23). On 3 March 1636/7 “Goodman Ezek(ie)ll Richeson had a ½ a cow’s grass appointed by Tho(mas) Squire” (ChTR 26).

Ezekiel Richardson had five acres of land Mystic Side in 1637, and also four and three-quarter cow commons (ChTR 27, 33). On 23 April 1638 he had Mystic Side allotments of 35, 85 and 5 acres (ChTR 36). On 30 December 1638 he had 6 ½ cow commons in the stinted common (ChTR 42).

In the 1638 Charlestown Book of Possessions “Ezechell Richardson” held thirteen parcels of land; three acre homestead in High Field; one acre meadow at north end of aforesaid three acres; one half acre meadow in High Field, one acre meadow on northeast side of Gibbon’s Field (which “he bought of William Nash to whom at first if fell by lot”); one acre arable land in East Field; two acres meadow bounded to the south on Cambridge Field and to the north on Gibbon’s Field and to the north by Gibbon’s River (later annotation: “sold to Thomas Brigdon”); six acres meadow in Mystic Field; five acres woodland in Mystic Field; thirty-five acres woodland in Mystic Field; three acres meadow “lying to the northward of Mount Prospect”) ninety acres of land in Water Field; six and a half milch cow commons (four and three quarters granted to him, one and a quarter bought of William Nash, and a half bought of George Whitehand); and four acres arable land in Line Field (ChBOP 3-4).

In his will, dated 20 July 1647 and proved 1 June 1648, “Ezekiell Richardson of Woebourne” appointed “my wife Susanna and my eldest son Theophilus joint executors”; and bequeathed to “Josias my son 30 pounds at twenty-one years of age; to “James my son 30 pounds” at twenty-one years of age; to “Phebe my daughter 30 pounds” at “twenty years of age or within six months after the day of her marriage”’ if any of these three should die before they come of age, the legacies be shared among the survivors; in case “my son Theophilus die before he shall accomplish one and twenty years of age, then his portion shall be equally divided to my other children”; discharged demands against “my brother Samuell Richardson”; to “my brother Thomas Richardson, his son Thomas, 10 s.” overseers Edward Converse and John Mousall of Woburn, if either of these die, then the survivor with the consent of Thomas Carter, pastor of the church in Woburn, to choose a replacement overseer; 30s to each overseer; residue to my executors, “provided that my wife may peacably enjoy her habitation in the house so long as she shall live” (SPR Case #72).

The inventory of the estate of Ezekiell Richardson was taken 18 November 1647 and totalled 190 pounds 6s, 6d, with no real estate included (SPR Case #72).

On 6 March 1649/50 Edward Converse confirmed to the heirs of Ezekiel Richardson an earlier sale of twelve acres of meadow & upland in Woburn (MLR 2:71). On 27 March 1651 Samuel Richeson of Woburn “having formerly sold unto Ezekill Richeson my brother (who is since deceased) forty acres of arable & meadow land” in Woburn, confirms the same to “my sister Susanna Brooke (who was the wife of my deceased brother Ezekill Richeson (MLR 2:72). On 23 March 1654/5 “Susanna Richeson now Brookes formerly the wife of Ezek: Richeson” confirmed a sale made eight years earlier by “Ezekill Richardson & Susanna Richardson my wife” to Thomas Moulton and John Greenland of thirty-five acres of land in Woburn (MLR 2:36). On 13 December 1659 “Henry Brookes & Susanna Brookes of Woburn,”in accordance with an award of the court, deeded to Theophilus Richardson the right and title they had in “the moiety or half part of the housing & land of Ezekiell Richardson of Woburn aforesaid, by executorship or otherwise” (MLR 2:154).

Associations: Samuel Richardson and Thomas Richardson, brothers of Ezekiel, arrived in New England by 1635; Francis Wyman and John Wyman sons of Ezekiel Richardson’s sister, Elizabeth, also came to New England (Sarah Hildreth Anc 25-27).

Comments: “Ezech(ie)ll Richeson” was admitted as an inhabitant of Charlestown in 1630 (ChTR 5) and appeared in the lists of inhabitants of 9 January 1633/4 and January 1635/6 (ChTr 10,15)

Bibliographic Note: In 1876, John Adams Vinton published a comprehensive genealogy of the descendants of the three Richardson brothers (The Richardson Memorial, Comprising a Full History and Genealogy of the Posterity of the three brothers, Ezekiel, Samuel, and Thomas Richardson (Portland, Maine, 1876). In 1903, Walter Kendall Watkins published the data on the English origin of the Richardson’s (NEHGR 57:298-300), and this material was incorporated in Walter Goodwin Davis’s treatment of the family (Sarah Hildreth Anc 25-31)
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The copyright on the Biography of Loammi Baldwin II has expired into the public domain. Otherwise, Copyright 1997 Norris Taylor