Who Were Walter Palmer's (1585-1661) Wives?

+1 vote
I am trying to merge Walter Palmer-70, his ancestors and descendants.  Walter was born in Nottingham, England about 1585, came to Salem MA, in 1629 and died in Stonington, CT, in 1661.

I have been able to merge lots of Walters, and I now have lots more wives than the man had.  I know he had at least two wives: Ann Elizabeth ? (married in England and d. bef. 1633), and Rebecca Short (married in Charlestown, MA, 1 June 1633.)  But the wives of the merged Walters have shown up with other last names as well: Chesebrough, Smith, Brewster and Blossom.  I have no evidence for the last name of Ann Elizabeth, or for a marriage to Frances Blossom.

Who were Walter's wives?
WikiTree profile: Walter Palmer
in Genealogy Help by Vic Watt G2G6 Pilot (336k points)
edited by Vic Watt
You can definitely eliminate Frances <Blossom> being a wife of Walter, as she was wife of William (the Naylor) Palmer, living in an entirely different region. Many people over the years have merged pieces of William, Walter, their wives and children. I also have taken on the project of trying to unmerge these errors where they appear.

4 Answers

+1 vote

Unless someone has other information, his biography says he had two wives (quote below).  This same information is in the Wikipedia article on him.  "Ann Elizabeth" is not mentioned, so that may not even be her name.

"Of his family, it may be said that he married in England, long before he came to this country. The name of his first wife has never been recorded. He m.2d, Rebecca Short, who came to this country in 1632. They were joined in marriage June 1, 1633."

Children of "Ann" and Walter, all born in England: Grace, Elizabeth, John, Jonas, and William.  Children of Rebecca and Walter all born in USA: Hannah, Elihu, Nehemiah, Moses, Benjamin, Gershom, and Rebecca.

by Karen Leigh Grady G2G1 (1.5k points)
edited by Karen Leigh Grady
Thanks Karen. Could you let me know where you found this information at? Just for my own record. Thanks. Also do you recall anywhere in there any information about a birth date for Walter? I have seen the date Vic referenced (so this question is as much for him as well) but i have not been able to track it down any further. I have it as a "placeholder" date myself but I have issues with it. For instance, if it is correct that he has two wives and you look at the dates of birth for the children by Rebecca he had his last child when he was in his early 60s. While this is not impossible it does raise some read flags for me.

Any help with sources you (or anyone else) might have on the Palmer branch would be greatly appreciated as like Vic I am trying to sort out the wives and children as it is something of a mess right now. thanks.
Hi Brian,  If you go to his profile [Palmer-70] and read his bio, it lists several sources (books) where this information was found.  

The Wikipedia article is here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Walter_Palmer_(Puritan) FindaGrave posts a website on his memorial #7158495, walterpalmersociety.com which I cannot find.

There is also more information with sources at rootsweb: http://wc.rootsweb.ancestry.com/cgi-bin/igm.cgi?op=GET&db=lanastl&id=I00319.

I don't find anything that gives an exact birthdate for him.  Given that Rebecca was 40ish when their last child was born, I don't think his age at the time is an issue.
Thanks. I had scanned that but just wanted to check you did not have any other sources you were working from. Thanks again.
+1 vote
A side issue - this family has been widely researched and meticulously documented.  It has, as you may know, its own group of dedicated resarchers, the Walter Palmer Society.   Since there can only be one truly correct profile for everyone please consider contacting them for their input.  http://www.walterpalmer.com/

I am not a member and descend from a different early Palmer
by Michael Palmer G2G6 (9.2k points)

Karen, Michael, or Brian,

If you ever come across Solomon Palmer, (b. @1746) (Palmer-10761), please let me know.  He farmed in Cumberland County, PA, in the 1770's, and served in the Cumberland County Militia in the Revolutionary War. This region became Mifflin County PA, and then (1800) Centre County, PA. He and sons Floyd and Budd (and perhaps also John) were in the 1790 census for Potter Twp, Centre County, PA.  He last appeared in the 1800 PA Census, so probably died in that next decade. His children were FLOYD PALMER, BUDD PALMER, JOHN PALMER, and ? CATHERINE PALMER. 

Because there were other Solomon Palmers, it is difficult to find him. Most of the documentation we have is Census and Land Purchase information. We "heard" he was from NY (Dutchess, Westchester?) but have no documentation. We think he was married twice. We also had the notion that one of his wives may have been a Budd, which would account for the unusual first name of Budd Palmer, one of his sons.

Would appreciate any resources you might be able to offer me! Thanks!

+1 vote
Below are verbatim excerpts from Robert Charles Anderson, The Great Migration Begins: Immigrants to New England 1622-1633 (published 1995; pages 1379-1383); the wives of Walter Palmer were 1) UNKNOWN and 2) Rebecca Short.


ORIGIN: Unknown



REMOVES: Rehoboth 1644, Stonington 1653 …

BIRTH: By about 1589 based on estimated date of first marriage.

DEATH: Southerton (later Stonington, Connecticut) “Sabbath day the 10th of November 1661 Walter Palmer departed this world” [Minor Diary 47].

MARRIAGE: (1) By about 1614 _____ _____; she died by 1633.

(2) By 1633 REBECCA SHORT “a maid servant, she came in the year 1632 & was married to [blank] Palmer a godly man of Charlestowne church” [RChR 77]. …


With first wife: [Grace, John, Elizabeth, William, Jonah]

With second wife: [Hannah, Elihu, Nehemiah, Moses, Benjamin, Gershom, Rebecca]
by Perry Streeter G2G3 (3.1k points)
+1 vote
Well if he was from Frampton in Dorset he did have a child there

Jonah, son of Walter Palmer, was baptised in 1627 in Frampton, Dorset, England.&lt;ref&gt;


"England, Select Dorset Church of England Parish Registers, 1538-1999"

England, Dorset, Parish Registers. Salt Lake City, Utah: FamilySearch, 2013; FHL Film Number: 002427488

{{Ancestry Record|9849|1701413}} (accessed 8 September 2022)

Jonah Palmer baptism in 1627, son of Walter Palmer, in Frampton, Dorset, England.


by Ann Browning G2G6 Mach 5 (54.6k points)

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