Sunday, February 26, 2012

No Room at the Inn in Lynn – Samuel Worcester

B. 1629 in Olney, England
M. 29 Nov 1659 in Rowley, Massachusetts
Wife: Elizabeth Parrat
D. 21 Feb 1681 in Lynn, Massachusetts
Emigrated: about 1638

It is believed that Samuel Worcester was born in Olney, England to Reverend William Worcester and Sarah Brown in 1629. He migrated to America with his parents in about 1638, settling in Salisbury, Massachusetts. By 1658, Samuel was a partner in a sawmill business.

Samuel married Elizabeth Parrat on November 29, 1659. Between about 1660 and 1681, they had 11 children. Samuel paid £70 for 300 acres of land in May of 1662 located in the area of Rowley that was later incorporated as Bradford. It is said that at some point, the Worcester family lost their home and everything in it when a fire consumed their house. Some time later, as they had "just begun to rise from the calamity," another fire burned their home, leaving them homeless again.

Others described Samuel as "a man of distinguished piety," who "shared largely in every effort to advance the interests of his adopted town." He donated an acre of his land of meadow for the general use of the church, so that a minister could clear it if he wished. He was the first representative from Bradford to the General Court, and took his seat as a member of that body in January 1680.

Samuel was reelected the following year. A meeting was called for February 22nd in Boston and he left his home in Bradford on foot, a distance of 30 miles. On the evening of February 20th, he made it as far as Lynn and sought a room for the evening, but couldn't get one at the inn. So he set out for the house of a friend. He never made it — the next morning, he was found dead, kneeling in the middle of the road. It's easy to imagine that freezing weather in New England may have been a factor in his death, but this is not stated in the anecdote.

Famous descendants of Samuel Worcester include Bette Davis.


1. William Worcester – B. 21 Jul 1661, Salisbury, Massachusetts; D. 23 Apr 1706, Bradford, Massachusetts; M. Martha Cheney (?-1729), 29 Jan 1691

2. Samuel Worcester – B. 31 Mar 1663, Salisbury, Massachusetts; D. 5 Jul 1686, Bradford, Massachusetts

3. Francis Worcester – B. 1665, Rowley, Massachusetts; D. 17 Dec 1717, Bradford, Massachusetts; M. Mary Cheney (1671-~1759), 29 Jan 1691

4. Joseph Worcester – B. Rowley, Massachusetts; D. Jun 1746, Rowley, Massachusetts; M. (1) Sarah _______ (?-1728); (2) Martha Palmer, 29 Apr 1730

5. Timothy Worcester – B. 4 Jun 1669, Rowley, Massachusetts; D. 13 Aug 1706, Bradford, Massachusetts; M. Huldah Cheney, 29 Jan 1691

6. Moses Worcester – B. 15 Jan 1671, Bradford, Massachusetts

7. Elizabeth Worcester – B. 16 Feb 1673, Bradford, Massachusetts

8. Dorothy Worcester – B. 21 Jan 1675, Bradford, Massachusetts; M. Joseph Dakin (1668-1744), 16 Jul 1696, Concord, Massachusetts

9. John Worcester – B. 31 Aug 1677, Bradford, Massachusetts; D. 1701

10. Ebenezer Worcester – B. 29 Apr 1679, Bradford, Massachusetts; D. 5 Feb 1764, Massachusetts; M. (1) Hannah _______ (?-1705); (2) Deliverance Looke (~1679-1768), 19 Nov 1706

11. Susanna Worcester – B. 11 Feb 1681, Bradford, Massachusetts

The Worcester family; or the descendants of Rev. William Worcester, W.W. Kellogg, 1856
The Life and Labors of Rev. Samuel Worcester, D.D., Samuel Melancthon Worcester, 1852
A Wooster Family [website]
GeneaStar: Famous Family Tree and Genealogy [website]

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