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John Crossman (abt. 1588 - 1687)

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John Crossman
Born about in Somersetshire, Taunton, Englandmap
Son of and [mother unknown]
[sibling(s) unknown]
Husband of — married about 1610 in Englandmap
Descendants descendants
Father of
Died in Newport, Newport, Rhode Islandmap
Profile last modified 19 Nov 2019 | Created 30 Dec 2010
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The Puritan Great Migration.
John Crossman migrated to New England during the Puritan Great Migration (1620-1640).
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John Crossman was born about 1588 in Somersetshire, Taunton, England. He was Baptized on September 5, 1588 at St. Gregory by St. Paul. (source: London, Church Of England, Baptisms, Marriages and Burials/ St. Gregory by St. Paul, composite Register of Baptisms, 1559-1627}

RI records state that John Crossman (A mariner) died in Newport in 1688, aged about 100 (Which means being born about 1588 in (likely) Somerset England, he was alive about the time of the Spanish Armada's sinking.). John presumably married Isabel MOSES in England (b. 1580 in England, d. 1678 in Rhode Island.) and together had Robert CROSSMAN. John Crosman (spelled this way on records) came to Taunton, MA in either 1637 or 1639 (around 50 years old). John was one of the 46 first purchasers of the town of Taunton and brought his son Robert with him when he came. John was outspoken and because of his defense of the Quakers, (whom he later joined in Providence, RI.) he was actually accused of blasphemy (foul language).1651, Oct. 24. Vol. IV, pt 1, p. 71 MBC: "Whereas the Courte and jury did not agree in John Crossmans case, who is now in prison for blasphemy and so it necessarily comes to the Court to be determined, itt is ordered, that that case be heardbefore the whole Courte on the morrow, by nine of the clock in the morning, being 28th of the 8th mo, 1651. Att the tyme appointed, the prisoner was brought before the whole Courte, the evidence against him was read, and itt was ordered, that JohnCrossman, for utterring blasphemy against God, as was prooved, shall be severely whipped, and branded on the forehead, with a hott iron, with the letter B, presently after the lecture in Boston, the 30th of this instant October, and be bannishedout of this jurisdiccon for ever, from the 20th of November next, not to retourne at his perill."

At his trial, he was sentenced to be "severely whipped", branded on the forehead with a "B" for blasphemy, and "banished forever". (See records for Oct 14, 1651 Vol. III, p. 328 Mass. Bay colony Records.) He apparently appealed and was heard again ten days later. Again, the sentence was issued. His punishment was to be delivered after Sunday services on Oct. 30th, 1651 in Boston. John was well accepted in Rhode Island. RI records state that John Crossman (A mariner) died in Newport in 1688, aged about 100

He died 26 JAN 1688 in Newport, Newport, Rhode Island, age 99-100.[1]

Genforum: from Rhode Island Records previous to 1690: "John Crossman born 1588 died Jan 26, 1688 at Newport, R.I. In 1677 he sold to John Easton & Walter Clark of Newport all rights in Providence for 40 shillings for use and benefit of people called quakers in Rhode Island and their successors." and from "Portsmouth, R.I. Records": "John Crossman, aged about 100 years, departed this life in Newport this 26th day 11th mo 1687/88"

Although not recognized as such John Crossman's and his son Robert's sons and daughters were the progenitors of many of colonial Massachusets leading families as entrepreneurs, political participants, religious leaders and military combatants.


Date: 26 Jan 1687/1688
Place: Newport, Newport, Rhode Island


  1. Robert Owen Crossman, A Genealogy of the Crossman Family: Descendants of John and Robert Crossman of Taunton, Massachusetts, Dallas: SMU Press, 1977.

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Comments: 8

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I found a record of a christening for John Croseman on 4 Mar 1588 in North Petherton, Somerset, England. No parents listed. Wonder if that could be this John Crossman? Name: John Croseman

Gender: Male Christening Date: 04 Mar 1588 Christening Date (Original): 04 MAR 1588 Christening Place: NORTH PETHERTON,SOMERSET,ENGLAND

Indexing Project (Batch) Number: P00259-1 System Origin: England-ODM GS Film number: 0908499, 0908500

Citing this Record "England Births and Christenings, 1538-1975," database, FamilySearch ( : 11 February 2018, John Croseman, 04 Mar 1588); citing , index based upon data collected by the Genealogical Society of Utah, Salt Lake City; FHL microfilm 908,499, 908,500. Although his son Robert is was mentioned as an early founder in New England is associated with Taunton, Massachusetts, which would seem to be telling as to John's baptism location of Taunton, England.

posted by Faylene Bailey
This page

names Lawrence as an ancestor, but not specifically as father and with significant doubt and no source.

posted by Barry Smith
Does anyone have access to the 1977 Crossman genealogy cited here? I'd like to know what if anything it says (and cites) about his origins.
posted by Jillaine Smith
There is another 1588 baptism of a Somerset-born John Crossman (no parent named):

How do we know which (if either) refers to the immigrant. And where does Lawrence as father come from?

posted by Jillaine Smith
The John Crossman baptized at St Gregory on 5 Sept 1588 was son of a John Crossman, not Lawrence:
posted by Jillaine Smith
Can we possibly find a link to the baptism record mentioned in the first paragraph? I'm thrown by the claim that he was born in Somersetshire, Taunton, England but the baptism took place in London.
posted by Jillaine Smith
Deb, He is listed (as John Crosman) on the list of the original 46 proprietors of Taunton, around 1637/8. See this link to History of Taunton.
posted by Jillaine Smith
Where is the evidence for his, or his son', Robert's, arrival prior to 1640? I have checked the GMD and find neither of them listed. Is there an alternate spelling of the name that I am missing?
posted by Deb (Lewis) Durham

John is 17 degrees from Danielle Liard, 10 degrees from Jack London and 10 degrees from Henry VIII of England on our single family tree. Login to find your connection.

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Categories: Puritan Great Migration