William Chase and Mary

My 10x Great Grandparents, William Chase and Mary are the immigrants for this branch of the family. William is estimated to be born between 1595-1605 in England the exact origin is unknown as are his parents. Mary, born in England also of unknown origin or parents.

William and Mary married in England about 1620 and had three children: William born in England about 1620, Mary 1637, and Benjamin about 1639, the last two born in Massachusetts.

They came to the colonies in 1630 with the Winthrop fleet and settled first in Roxbury, MA. William requested on 19 Oct 1630 and then on 14 May 1634 became a Freeman. Church records in Roxbury show that William became the 13th member and Mary became the 29th member. The church records also reveal that “He brought one child his son William, a child of ill qualities, and a sore affliction to his parents.” It went on about Mary “..long and tedious affliction of his wife; after his wife’s recovery she bare him a daughter, which they named Mary, borne about the middle of the 3rd month 1637.” In another section of the records it further explained Mary’s ailment: “She had a paralytic humor which fell into her backbone, so that she could not stir her body, but as she was lifted, and filled her with great torture, and caused her backbone to go out of joint, and bunch out from the beginning to the end of which infirmity she lay 4 years and a half, and a great part of the time a sad spectacle of misery. But it pleased God to raise her again, and she bore children after it.”

At some point, they intended to move to Scituate, MA but ended up in Yarmouth instead. He took the Oath of Fidelity in 1639 and 1657 in Yarmouth. Offices he held there include: Constable 1638/9, Collector 1638, and Surveyor of Highways 1657.

He was included on the list of men able to bear arms in 1643. He was in charge of a military organization in defense against the Indians. He was a drummer in the Myles Standish company in the Narragasset expedition in 1645 and received 5 schillings. I believe this conflict led to a treaty being signed in that the Narragasset tribe agreed not to attack any tribe that was allied with the United Colonies.

They had land near Stony Cove and Swan Pond in Yarmouth, MA. Below shows Yarmouth in 1644. The mark is approximately where William’s land was near Swan Pond. He was a housewright and there is a document that shows an agreement that he would build the home of Andrew Hellot in 1639 in Yarmouth. Later he was documented as being a planter.

from History of Old Yarmouth


A couple of times, William got into a bit of trouble. In 1640, he was censured and ordered to leave Yarmouth in 6 months for his miscarriage against Mr Matthews, who was the pastor, and disturbances of the proceedings of  the church, court and country. It seems that when he was walking home from the court and told Edward Morrell “Mr Matthews had nothing to say for himself, and that he marveled how any durst join with him in the fast, and further said that some being then in presence with the magistrates, did hold up his hand, and cried, Fye, fye! for shame!” Well 6 months came and he didn’t leave. There is no documentation as to why this happened.  In June 1654, William was before the grand jury for “driving one pair of oxen in the yoke upon the Lord’s day, in time of exercise, about five miles.”  I don’t know what the consequence of this was. He was considered more of a latitudinarian as the years passed.

Their daughter Mary died in 1652 and was buried on 28 Oct 1652. The records show that Mary was the daughter of Goodman Chase the elder.

William died between 4 May(will written) and 13 May 1659(proved). His will left William 5 schillings since he had already received a fair portion. Benjamin received 1 calf and 2 steer calves. His wife, Mary recieved the rest. After she dies, Benjamin gets 2/3 of the estate and William 1/3.

Mary died before 6 Oct 1659. This is when the final division of the property took place. This is curious in that her death was looked into. An inquiry was assembled of 12 men. It seems they thought the death was suspicious but ultimately found that she died of natural causes.

A memorial is erected at the Baptist Church Cemetery, West Harwich, MA. William Chase, First American Ancestor Born 1595-Died 1659, Served in Narragansett War 1644.

photo courtesy K Murphy

It is not known where either William or Mary are buried.


William Chase and Mary, their son,

Benjamin Chase and Philip Sherman, their son,

Walter Chase and Deliverance Simmons, their son,

George Chase and Mary Strange, their son,

Edward Chace and Abigail Paine, their son,

Walter Chace and Barbara Brown, their son,

Edward Chace and Julia Goodrich, their daughter,

Sarah Jane Chace and Jabez Bostwick, their son,

John Day Bostwick married Ida Shelby, their son,

Charles Bostwick married Alpha Wilkins, their daughter,

Florence Bostwick -my grandmother


First Church in Roxbury (Roxbury, Boston, Mass.). Records, 1630-1956. Record book of First Religious Society in Roxbury, ca. 1630-1775. bMS 626/3 (5), Andover-Harvard Theological Library, Harvard Divinity School.

History of Barnstable County, Massachusetts, 1620-1637-1686-1890 Author: Deyo, Simeon L
Colonial Wars of North America, 1512-1763, Author: Allan Gallay
New England Families, Genealogical and Memorial Volume 2, edited by Eilliam Richard Cutter, p 1012-3
Records of the Colony of New Plymouth, in New England: Court orders, New Plymouth Colony, Nathaniel Bradstreet Shurtleff, Massachusetts General Court p 172
Genealogy of a portion of the descendants of William Chase : who came to America in 1630, and died in Yarmouth, Massachusetts, May, 1659, Chase, George Whitefield, b. 1844
The New England Historical and Genealogical Register, Scituate and Barnstable church records Vol 9 p 286
The Connecticut Magazine, Vol 3-4 p 241
History of Old Yarmouth: Comprising the Present Towns of Yarmouth and Dennis, Author Charles Francis Swift 1884.
Find A Grave, database and images: accessed 04 February 2018), memorial page for William Chase, Sr (1595–May 1659), Find A Grave Memorial no. 16683401, citing Baptist Church Cemetery, West Harwich, Barnstable County, Massachusetts, USA ; Maintained by Kevin Murphy (contributor 46486461) .

4 thoughts on “William Chase and Mary

  1. William & Mary were my 9th GG. William was born 1605-07 and died 1659. His wife MaryTownley was born 1603 and died 1659. I have traced the Chase line back to Philip Case(1305 – 1365) and his wife Audrey(1300-UK) Their son Thomas Chase(1330-UK) was the first appearance of the name as Chase. His wife was Elizabeth Turner (1330 -1405) Thomas was Lord of Basing and his son, grand son and GG son were all named Thomas, and Knights.

    Yours Truly
    Llew Chase – llewchase@hotmail.com


    1. Hello,
      I just found this site. I am descended from William Chase, the sequence being his son William, then Samuel, Philip, Caleb, Alvah, George Chace, Artner Berni and my father, Artner Berni Chace II. Your comment gives Mary’s maiden name as Townley, the first mention I have seen of her last name.


    2. Hi.. I am just wondering if you would be willing to share your sources for going back that far on the Chase family.. I am a descendent of William Chase


      1. Hi,
        I listed my sources under references at the end of the post. I think everything can be accessed for free. Copy and paste the reference and you should be able to see it.


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