Friday, February 7, 2014

Thomas Bond of Lancashire England : Quakers To America

Above : Lancaster Castle where numerous Quakers were imprisoned, including my 9th great grandfather Thomas Bond.
If you are researching Quaker ancestors, you are in luck. Generally speaking, this is an easier genealogical task than most because the Quakers kept excellent records of births , marriages/banns, deaths and misbehavior. Following is a brief history of some of my ancestors who were followers of the Quaker faith A  list of  free links are included so that you can research your Quaker ancestors as well.

Thomas Bond: The Bond Family and Quaker Origins
Thomas Bond , my 9th great grandfather ,was born in Woodacre, Lancashire, England in 1630. A wealthy iron monger**, he published some of the first Quaker writings in 1655. In 1673 he was imprisoned in Lancaster Castle . He had refused to take an oath in court when he was on trial for failure to pay tithes. Swearing an oath was contrary to Quaker teachings.As was the fate of many Quakers he was imprisoned, on this occasion  for 9 weeks. The wealthy fared better in prison than those with no means. Shackles of the legs and arms would be removed if money passed hands to the guards. A better room might be acquired for financial consideration.The incarceration would have been a hardship on anyone and meals would have seemed particularly spartan to Thomas Bond who would normally have had a sturdy diet of oatmeal, beef, bacon, mutton, potatoes and butter. Perhaps Thomas Bonds' incarceration was less grueling than the prison time of the less well healed Quaker leader George Fox .  George Fox mentions the trials of Thomas Bond in The Journal of George Fox: Being an Historical Account of the Life, Travels .

Thomas Bond

George Fox was summoned to the Lancaster Assizes on a number of occasions, the most famous of which was in September 1664 when he refused to take the oath and was remanded in custody until the next Assizes. He described his incarceration at Lancaster Castle prison:"Then I was put into a tower, where the smoke of the other rooms came up so thick, that it stood as dew upon the walls, and sometimes it was so thick that I could hardly see the candle when it burned; and I being locked under three locks, the under-jailer, when the smoke was great, would hardly be persuaded to come up to unlock one of the upper doors, for fear of the smoke, so that I was almost smothered. Besides, it rained in upon my bed; and many times, when I went to stop out the rain in the cold winter season, my shift would be as wet as muck with the rain that came in upon me. And the place being high and open to the wind, sometimes as fast as I stop it, the wind, being high and fierce, would blow it out again. In this manner did I lie all that long cold winter, till the next Assize; in which time I was so starved with cold and rain, that my body was greatly swelled, and my limbs much numbed. "

Two Images of  the Quaker Leader George Fox. The image on the right is in the possession of Swarthmore College, painted by Sir Peter Lely.

Thomas Bond lived another ten years after his release from Lancaster Castles prison. Today this same Castle holds the distinction of being the oldest working courtroom in England and the court which has passed the most death sentences. The room where the Quakers and the Lancashire witches were out on trial is now a jurors waiting room.
Thomas Bond may have had intentions to move to America. Two years before his death he acquired 1000 acres in the County of Bucks. Some of his children including his daughter Jane Bond accompanied other Quakers to Bucks Co, Pa. where she married John Scott. After John Scotts' death, John Whittacre Sr., who had also come to America with the Quakers from Lancashire England, announced at the Falls Monthly Meeting of 6 January 1702.,his intention to marry the widow Jane Bond Scott . The union was approved.

Burial Record of Thomas Bond from the Database "England and Wales, Quaker Birth Marriage and Death Record"s on

Some of my ancestors arrived aboard "The Lamb" a ship in William Penns' fleet.

My descent from this line is as follows:
John Whitacre Sr (
1678 – 1742) to Jane Bond (1664 – 1742)
John Whitacre Jr (1704 – 1775) to Naomi Hulme (1713 – 1797)
George Whitacre (1743 – 1785) to Ruth Wilson (1748 – 1806)
Joshua Whitacre (1768 – 1814) to Rachel Wilson (1768 – 1814)
Nancy Whitacre  (1793 – 1866) to Joseph Strickling (1790 – 1874)
Robison Strickling (1822 – 1902) to Louisa E. Baker (1825 – 1898)
Alexander Strickling (1857 – 1923) to Emma Jane Bigley (1856 – 1898)
John William Strickling (1879 – 1945) to Florence Ann Watson (1880 – 1944)
Vera Mae Strickling  (1901 – 1929)  to Harley E. Bowles (1902 – 1974)
Robert Heston Bowles

This line of my family is imarried in several places with the Hayhurst line. Cuthbert Hayhurst of Slaidburn, Yorkshire England. ThIS well known Quaker is my 1st cousin, 11 generations past. His grandmother Elizabeth Hayhurst was married to John Bond. John Bond is my 11th ggrandfather . In 
The History of the Society of Friends in America
 By James Bowden, Cuthbert Hayhurst is described as "one of the earliest of those who professed our principals" and that 'He came forth as a minister of the Gospel. As early as 1654 he suffered imprisonment for preaching the truths of the gospel". In 1682 he arrived in America with William Penn and his assistance and ministry to the new settlers was invaluable.

Timeline of Quaker Activity in Lancaster

1652 + John Lawson, Lancaster's first Quaker, is converted by George Fox. [His tombstone can be seen in the porch of the Meeting House on Meeting House Lane. 1652 or 3 P Quaker George Fox from Ulverston is summoned to the Court of Sessions in Lancaster on a blasphemy charge which is thrown out for lack of evidence. Dr. William Marshall, Vicar of Lancaster, and two priest's sons were witnesses against him.
1653  [approximately] Quaker George Fox is thrown out of Lancaster Priory and people throw stones at him along the street. He takes refuge in a shop..
1658  Oliver Cromwell dies.
1677  The Society of Friends (Quakers) build a Meeting House on the southern slopes of Castle Hill. [It is rebuilt in 1708.]
1681  Seth Bushell appointed Vicar. He was noted by Quaker William Stout, as a 'person of a moderate disposition' who 'much discouraged persecution for religion . . . and very courteous to Dissenters of all denominations'. . [See Note 3]
1682  Seth Bushell, Vicar of Lancaster. . [See Note 3] 

1702  Anne, sister of Queen Mary and second daughter of King James II is made Queen of Great Britain and Ireland. She remains a Protestant. [She is the last British sovereign of the house of Stuart.
1708  The Society of Friends (Quakers) rebuild their Meeting House on the southern slopes of Castle Hill. [On Meeting House Lane. The tombstone of John Lawson, Lancaster's first Quaker, can be seen in the porch.

** The earliest records suggest that the Ironmongers, then known as Ferroners, were an effective body in 1300, when they took action against the smiths of the Wealds of Kent and Sussex over the quality of iron supplied for the wheels of carts in the City of London. By 1328 they were regarded as a firmly established brotherhood, joining in the elections of the City officials and choosing four of their members to treat with the Mayor and Sheriffs.The Ironmongers' received a grant of arms in 1455, describing them as the "Honourable Crafte and Fellasship of Fraunchised Men of Iromongers", and a charter of incorporation from Edward IV in 1463, which was reconfirmed in 1558, 1560, 1604 and 1687 by various monarchs.

Quaker Sources  and Resources Online

I am fascinated by a current research project which has commenced at Lancaster University spearheaded by Dr Hilary Hinds, Professor Alison Findlay,and Professor Emeritus Meg Twycross, who are  tracing the impact of George Fox on the environment from 1652-1653. Transcriptions and images of George Fox's journals, courtesy of the Religious Society of Friends in Britain are available to view. Below is a sample: View the project Here.

Thank you for stopping by. See you soon! The Glamorous Genealogist

Updated from and article I published in 2007
 Randi Bowles-Meentzen aka The Glamorous Genealogist

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