To June from Mario
Good news and bad news. The bad news first.
The connection to the Pearce family of Plymouth which I thought you could
probably claim through a Saunders ancestress fell through a couple of days ago
when I found actual marriage dates. Sarah, the Saunders woman you descend from
married John Wiley on April 5th, 1722. On the other hand, the John Saunders -
Mary Pearce marriage I had so hoped was her parents' did not take place until
January 23rd 1709/10. Since Sarah could not have been merely 13 at the time of
her marriage, Mary Pearce is not her mother. Just what Saunders line Sarah
springs from is still unclear to me.
Better news. While trying to get some background on Miriam Moore, the
grandmother of the John Wiley referenced above, I came across a Phillip Moore
who died in 1698 in Hartford and whose family the historian described as
"possibly Negro". Now even though Miriam would have been born in the 1640s and
was probably white, the fact that a possible relative of hers was black should
fit our purposes. Am checking to see just how close this relationship is.
That far back, they should not have been any more than first cousins and, as
far as I have been able to look in the last few days, there only appears to be
one Moor family in Connecticut at this point in time.
Even more exciting though, is the relationship of one of your Angell aunts to
two rather interesting families in the annals of African American New England
history. Sometime in the 18th century, Alma Angell married Capt. Benjamin
Greene who was the son of Nathaniel Green, a Governor of Rhode Island and the
Commander in Chief of the Nation's only black Revolutionary regiment. It is
the marriage of their daughter, Delight, however, which I am most intrigued
with. For what has only come to light in the last few years is the fact that
her husband, John Rogers was descended from a rather notorious family of
nonconformist Quakers who in the late 1690s had suffered imprisonment battling
slavery. Although fairly wealthy and politically prominent, they not only
treated their former African and Indian servants as relatives, they even
intermarried with them. The "mulatto," Adam Rogers, for example, married a
cousin of his and, again, of special interest to our purpose, all his children
and grand children married their white neighbours. One became the wife of a
French Huguenot refugee. Their daughter, believe it or not, was in turn wed to
the brother of a Governor of Santo Domingo and even lived there for a while.
The revulsion Monsieur and Madame Geignard felt for Caribbean slavery brought
them back to Connecticut a few years later.
One of Adam Rogers' descendants, a couple of generations removed, is the
Reverend Timothy Merritt. If not the first, he was among the earliest of
"white" abolitionist agitators in the Northeast. He not only lectured
extensively, but preceded Garrison as a career publisher for the cause.
More later. Mario