John Thompson/Alice Freeman

John Thompson/Alice Freeman

August 23rd, 2011

JOHN THOMPSON (1585-1626)

ALICE FREEMAN (1595-1664)



      YEAR CAME TO AMERICA:         

   FAMILY MEMBERS ON SHIP:     Widow Alice and  1 daughter and 2 sons


John was born about 1585 and was of Preston Capes, Northampton, England.  He was the son of John Thompson.  Alice was born abt 1595 and was also of Preston Capes, Northampton, England.  Her parents were Henry Freeman and Margaret Edwards. [1] Henry Freeman was born abt 1560 in Cranford, Northamptonshire, England, Margaret Edwards was born abt 1564 in England they married before 25 Dec 1591.  It is through Margaret’s ancestry that we claim royalty which goes to King John I Lackland of England, House of Pantegenet.  He reigned from 1167-1216.[2]

John and Alice married in abt 1616 and had 7 children, Thomas christened 23 Dec 1616, Mary chr 14 Nov 1619, Dorothy chr 23 Jul 1621, Bridget chr 11 Sep 1622, Doroty (Dority) chr 5 Jul 1624, Nathaniel chr 16 Oct 1625, and Martha chr 17 Dec 1626.  All the children were born at Preston Capes, Northampton, England.


John Thompson made his will 6 Nov 1626 signing his name to that form; both forms of spelling, with and without the ‘h’ are, however, used indiscriminately in the body of the will, and on the parish register. When the eleventh of April 1627, came around, John Tompson was dead, and at that date his will was probated in the Prerogative Court of Canterbury. Alice was probably the second wife of John Thompson. The son Thomas, who is mentioned in his will, was, doubtless, a child of the first wife, and the eldest son, by reason of a better inheritance than the others received. Thomas probably remained in England.


Will mentions wife Alice Tompson and son Thomas Tompson, not yet 12 years old. Speaks of “all my children” but does not name them. Directs brothers-in-law William Spencer, a minister, and Henry Freeman to sell certain properties, proceeds to be distributed among children other than Thomas when they reached age 21. Wife Alice and brother-in-law Thomas Freeman were made executors of his estate. Parish records list baptisms of six children, with five surnames spelled Thompson and one Tompson. Preston Capes Parish records do not mention burial of John. He may have been buried elsewhere.[3]


It is said that widow Alice came to New England with 1 daughter (Dorothy) and 2 sons.[4]  It is not known when Alice Thompson brought her son and daughters to New England, but she was living in Roxbury, Mass., before 1640. “The Thomson family in England held a high position, their social status being next to that of the county families. Mistress Alice must have been a lady of character and refinement. Her success in bringing her children through all their troubles and so well preparing them for the duties of life which they assumed, testifies to this.”


Widow Alice Freeman Thompson was married second to Robert Parke whose wife, Martha Chaplin, died in 1643 in Mystic, New London, Connecticut.  Robert’s son Thomas had married Alice’s daughter Dorothy Thompson.  They were married 30 May 1644 in Roxbury, Essex, Massachusetts.[5]     Record of General Court of MA, dated 30 May 1644, says, “That he (Robert) may proceed in marriage with Alice Thompson without further delay.” He was almost 64 at the time. She was around 45.


In 1649 they were living in New London and removed to Stonington, CT, where Robert bought 2,000 acres from Winthrop and was the 13th signer of the Covenant.  He moved to New London to rejoin the Denisons at the new settlement.  He was a resident of the town plot of New London for about six years, his new barn, which stood on what is now the corner of Hempstead and Granite Streets, was used as the first house of worship in the new town and the call to service was by the beat of drum.  Then he moved to lands which he owned on the Mystic River. Robert Park was one of the first to settle the Groton side of Mystic in 1654, and later the town of Preston east of Norwich.


In 1658 Robert Parke was chosen as one of the men appointed by the General Court of MA to an official position, in the organization of the town of Southertown (Stonington) in 1658.


Robert died 4 Feb 1664/5 in Mystic, New London, Connecticut at the age of 84 years.  His grave is in the White Hall graveyard, at White Hall, Mystic, Connecticut.  His will was probated in 1665.  His house was east of the present road and southeast of the burial ground, and stood just south of a small knoll, somewhat rocky.

His will is on the town book, dated 14 May 1660. Proved in March 1664/5. It names William, Samuel and Thomas. Will of Robert Park of Mistick (sic) “neere New London.” Dated 14 May 1660, proved 14 March 1664/5. Names William, eldest son, executor, “all houses and lands at Mistick on boath Sides of the Riuer (170 acres);” Son Samuel, 50 pounds “in case he shall first Come and Demand the Same in Roxburyh, Mass., within 7 years next;” “Thomas Parke or any of his children at choice of my Executor, one-third of my estate in lands or good pay.”


Memorial: Robert Parke, born about 1580 in Bures, Suffolk, England, married (1) at Semer, Suffolk, 9 Feb. 1601/02 Martha Chapin, (2) 30 May 1644 at Roxbury, MA, Alice (Freeman) Thompson, widow of John Thompson of Preston, Northamptonshire. In 1649 They were living in New London and removed to Stonington, CT, where Robert bought 2,000 acres from Winthrop and was the 13th signer of the Covenant. He died 4 Feb. 1664/5 in Stonington and is said to be buried in Whitehall Cemetery, Mystic.


Alice Freeman died 11 Feb 1664/5 just a week after Robert in Mystic, New London, Connecticut.[6]


[1] Prodigy post says Parke Society has her lineage back to Charlemagne and King John, but 7th edition of Ancestral Roots cuts line off at Joan de Harley. Will have to check Parke Society. Roots says: “Other lines available for Alice Freeman” but doesn’t list any.] “American Ancestors & Cousins of the Princess of Wales” by Roberts/Reitwiesner, lists a line back to Thomas Giffard and Joan Langston. The Giffard line then goes back to Ethelred II, King of England. The Langston line goes back to Hugh Capet, King of France. Both these lines are traced farther back via other sources.


[2] Alice Freeman, daughter of (DO) Margaret Edwards, DO Edward Edwards, son of (SO) Susanna Samwell, SO Amy Gifford, DO Thomas Gifford, SO John Gifford, SO Roger Gifford, SO Sir Thomas Gifford, SO Sir John Gifford,  SO Matilda de Clifford, DO Margaret V Llewelyn, DO Joan Plantagenent Princess of Wales, DO King John I Lackland of England, SO King Henry II Curtmantel of England, SO Queen Matilda of England, DO King Henry I Beauclere of England, William the Conqueror.

[3] PARKE FAMILY GENEALOGY, by Parks, page 30.




[6] Park Society; History of the Town of Stonington by Wheeler; The New England Ancestry of HRH the Princess of Wales” by Gary Boyd Roberts and William A. Reitwiesner; NEHGR, April 1972; The Ancestors and Descendants of Horace Thaddeus Perkins 1812-1951 on Film 1,036,644; A. Roots 29A; Boston Evening Transcript; History of New London, Conn., by Frances Manwaring Caulkins; The First Church of Christ in New London, 974.65/N2, K2l; American Ancestors and Cousins of the Princess of Wales (Diana) by Gary Boyd Roberts and William Addams Reitwiesner; The Winthrop Fleet of 1630 by Charles Edward Banks; Topographical Dictionary of 2885 English Emigrants to New England; TAG 16/16; Saturday’s Children–A History of the Babcock Family in America by C. Merton Babcock; Potter-Richardson Memorial; Saturday’s Children, A History of the Babcock Family in America; Founders of Early American Families; The Great Migration Begins,  v3, pages 1389 and 1390;

Sources: History of Stonington by Wheeler; Boston Evening Transcript; A. Roots 29A; Roberts/Reitwiesner; The Blackmans of Knight’s Creek; The Carolingian Ancestry of Edmond Hawes, Alice Freeman and Thomas James; American Genealogist, 13/3; The Visitation of Northamptonshire 1564 and 1618-19 (film 94,956); Potter-Richardson Memorial; Royal Descents of 500 Immigrants; The Great Migration Begins, v1, p523; A Witter Family History by Edwin D. Witter Jr.; Magna Charta Sureties 163-10.

Magna Charta Sureties 163-10.


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