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Sharing information about your Boston line

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  • Sharing information about your Boston line


    In an effort to get our Boston Surname Group more active, I would like to invite everyone to introduce yourself and tell us about your Boston ancestors. Share as little or as much as you like. We know that there are several lines according to the Y DNA testing that has been done, but we don't know if they all go back to one ancestor way back or if just a couple lines are connected. So, I will start and hope that everyone else will join in.

    My husband's oldest known Boston ancestor is Major John Boston, born 1737 and died 1810. We do not know where he was born, family lore says he is Scottish and the family was in Nassawadox, VA in the 1660's. I have found records that show some of the families the Bostons marry into were there at that time but no supporting evidence to say his ancestors were there. We do know that he was in Onslow County, NC in the 1760's where he bought land along the Neuse River. There were several Boston men in the same area according to tax lists and military records with names of Hugh, Charles, Matthew , and James. Major John married Rebeckah Randal about 1760 and a son, James was born in 1767. In 1771, John was named as a son in law in the will of Charles I Cox, although no daughter's name was mentioned as his wife.

    John held several positions in the Swansboro area and served in the militia with Colonels Cray, Rhodes, and Mitchell. In 1785, the Boston family, probably with a number of other families, moved to Effingham County, GA. I was lucky enough to come across some personal records from the Boston/Briggs family on the North Carolina Digital Records. These tattered and torn pages were hand written by James Boston, son of Major John. The papers also included a copy of a letter that James had written about the month long move from Onslow County, NC to Effingham County, GA. James also wrote about his marriage to Elizabeth Dell Briggs in 1794 and creates a page with names, birthdates, and notes about the baptism for each of his 10 children with Elizabeth. My husband's GG GF, George Whitfield Boston was the last child of James and Elizabeth. Sadly, Elizabeth died 10 days after George's birth. James writes of "giving" George to Mr. William KIng and Margaret King to raise. When I first read this, I was taken back, how could a father do this? Then I realized he needed someone to care for this newborn, as his other children were still young, two of them still just toddlers. We know from these papers, that James remarried two years later to a Sarah Williamson Kettles, a widower herself. They have at least one son, Thomas Micklebury Boston.

    Most of the children of James and Elizabeth stay in the Effingham and Screven Counties of Georgia. The older sons of James, those that live to adulthood, become owners of massive amounts of land along the Savannah River. One of the daughters married into the Williamson family, who also owned one of the largest plantations in the area. George marries Sarah Elizabeth Tison, whose mother was a Goldwire, one of the well known families in the area. Sarah and George have two children, William King Boston and Margaret King Boston, both named after the couple who raised him. Sarah dies very young and George marries Laura Louisa Strobhar. In the late 1840's, early 1850's, he moves the family to Alachua County, FL, where his youngest two sisters live. Both sisters had married into the Dell family, which goes back to Elizabeth Dell Briggs, whose mother was a Dell. The Dells had a huge Spanish land grant and helped to settle what is now Jacksonville, FL. Their land also ran into what is now Alachua and Marion County, FL. The Dells were early residents of Newnansville, FL. The Boston Family Farm was established in 1850 and was farmed until the 1970's by the family. The land was donated in a living will to the University of Florida and is now the Boston Farm and Santa Fe River Ranch Beef Unit and is used for researching different grasses for cattle feed. William King Boston, my husband's Great Grandfather married Henri French Richard, whose family owned the Sugar Grove Plantation, now the Santa Fe River Ranch, that bordered the Boston farm. They had two sons and a number of daughters. George, the oldest son, is my husband's Grandfather. He became a dentist and traveled south to Manatee County, FL, doing dentistry. He married Meribah Eulogia Gillett, whose mother was an Alderman. The Alderman family somehow ties into the Boston family back in Lowndes County, GA area as well but I haven't found the link.

    Thomas Micklebury Boston married Rebecca Goldwire, from the same Goldwire line as George's wife. They left Effingham County in the late 1830's early 1840's, along with a number of Rebecca's siblings and families and settled into what is now Brooks and Lowndes County, GA. I can't find census records for Thomas and Rebecca after 1860, so it appears they died and their children are mentioned as living with Rebecca's sisters and families in the 1860 census. A number of them stay in the area but some move west into Texas and some move into North Florida.

    The Boston Family appears to have been a small family that often married into larger, more wealthier families. While researching, I have been fortunate to make contact with two of my husband's 4th cousins. One is the gentleman who turned James' papers over to the North Carolina Archives. Since the Boston line was on his mother's side, he thought the line had died out and knew of no living Boston family. The other 4th cousin lives today in the area of Effingham County and we were blessed to have visited him and his siblings while on a trip to do research. While there we also met with a lovely lady, who believes that her family married into the Boston family when a sister of James married a David Morgan. In her tree, she has several David Boston Morgan men. I have also found records that indicate there was another sister, Mary Boston, who married a David Ryalls (or Royal), a family tied into the Charles I Cox from Onslow County, NC. So although I have not broken through the "Boston Brick Wall", I have weakened it slightly.

    Maybe some of this sounds familiar to you or the surnames or places are in your tree, if so, let's get in touch and see what we can find in common. You never know till you try!