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Isaac Cummings (1601 - abt. 1677)

Deacon Isaac Cummings aka Commen
Born in Easthorpe, Essex, Englandmap
Ancestors ancestors
Brother of
Husband of — married about 1628 in Essex or Suffolk, Englandmap [uncertain]
Descendants descendants
Died about at about age 76 in Topsfield, Essex, Massachusetts Bay Colonymap
Profile last modified | Created 28 Dec 2008
This page has been accessed 5,401 times.
The Puritan Great Migration.
Isaac Cummings migrated to New England during the Puritan Great Migration (1620-1640).
Join: Puritan Great Migration Project
Discuss: pgm

NOTE: Previously there was a second wife attached to this profile - Marie Margaret Kinsley. If a valid, scholarly source can be provided, she may certainly be reattached.



Birth 3 MAY 1601 Mistley, England[citation needed] Isaac Cummings took two depositions on his date of birth, the first deposition dated March 27, 1666 says he was born in 1600/1601. The 2nd deposition taken March 25, 1675 says he was born 1602/1603.[1]

John Plummer in his "Isaac Cummings of Essex County, Massachusetts" found records for an Isaack Commen (Variant spelling) who had children exactly matching those of the immigrant Isaac Cummings.

  • He was of Mistley, Essex, on the Suffolk border.
  • Henry Kimball who came on the Elizabeth in 1634 and settled in Watertown was also from Mistley in Essex, England.
  • Isaack Commen has no records in Mistley just before appearing in Watertown, Massachusetts.
  • The spelling Commen is in line with the American variations which include, among others, Comen.[1]
Marriage 1628 Mistley, England. Their first known child was baptized at Mistley in early 1629.[1]
Husband: Isaac Cummings
Wife: Anne Unknown

The Isaac Cummings Family Association attributes all five children to Isaac's wife Ann.[2] Children baptized at Mistley, Essex, England:[3]

  • Isaac Cummings, bpt. 20 May 1629; bur. 23 May 1629 at Mistley, England.
  • John Cummings John bpt. 9 May 1629; m. Sarah Howlett about 1655. Died at Dunstable on December 7, 1700.
  • Isaac Cummings bpt. 17 March 1632/33; m. Mary Andrews on November 27, 1659 at Topsfield, Mass. Died before 1712.
  • Ann Cummings, bpt. 22 Feb 1634/35; m. John Pease. died at Enfield, Connecticut on June 29, 1689.

Child born in America:

  • Elizabeth Cummings, b. ca. 1637, probably Watertown or Ipswich; m. John Jewett. Died July 9, 1679 at Ipswich.


Event: Commoner of Ipswich on the last day of 1641
Occupation: Grandjuryman, deacon, freeman May 18, 1642
Occupation: Deacon, farmer, constable
Residence: 1652 1636 Watertown, 1641 Ipswich & 1652 Topsfield, MA
Event: AKA Isahk Commin on English records
Event: AKA Children's birth records show Isaack Commen
Event: Came to America October 1635 from Mistley, County Essex, England

"Isaac Cummings appears on a list of the 'Commoners' of Ipswich, Mass., on the last day of the year 1641. He is said to have had, as early as July 1638, a planting lot in 'Reedy Marsh,' and a house lot in town. An old record is quoted in Essex Co. Hist. & Gen. Register, to wit: 'Whereas Isaac Comings...Sold Andrew Hodges of this town all the said seven acres of land, more or less, lying near highway to Jeffries Neck, 1639, 26, (6).' The name appears on a list of Freemen in Watertown, 1642. In 1652, Samuel Symonds and his wife Martha sell him in consideration of ?30, 150 acres 'joining partly on Daniel Clark's land.' This Clark was an early settler of Topsfield. Mr. Samuel Todd, who married one of the Cummings descendants, and who had given much attention to this research, once wrote me: 'There is evidence that the first Isaac owned considerable land on the west side of Howlet's (then Winthrop's) brook, pretty near two miles N. W. of the old Cummings place on this side of the river.' 'One hundred acres lying on the westerly side and fifty acres on the easterly side,' so says Historical Collections, Vol. V. of Topsfield Historical Society.

"In I666 he was constable, and his son Isaac was his deputy, and in a deposition he states his age to be 65. The same year he was assessed 4s. 7d. to pay the town's indebtedness. He was deacon of the church, and in 1676, at least, moderator of the town meeting. No mention remains of his wife nor of her name. She was not living when his will was made, May 8, 1677. It is on file in the probate office, but unrecorded." (From the Cummings Memorial)

Note:Lived in Mistley, Essex, ENGLAND from May 20, 1629 to February 22, 1634/35. Moved to Watertown, MA in 1635 where he received 35 acres of land which were part of the "Great Dividend". Acquired land in Ipswich, MA before July 25, 1638 and in Topsfield, MA by April 1, 1652. Juryman of Topsfield in 1675; moderator of town meeting in 1676; and was deacon of church for many years.[1]

From Cutter's Historic Homes

"Isaac Cummings, the immigrant ancestor of David Cummings, was born in 1601. He appears in Ipswich, Massachusetts, in 1641, in the list of commoners, and is said to have had a planting lot in the town as early as July, 1638. He was admitted a freeman in 1642; was a constable in 1666 with his son Isaac as his deputy; was elected deacon of the church in 1676, and was often moderator of the town meetings. His will was dated May 8, 1677. His children were: Ann, born 1629, married John Pease; John, born about 1630; Isaac, see forward; Elizabeth, married John Jewell."[4]

"Isaac Cummings was the first Cummings who emigrated from England and settled in this country. In a deposition made by him in March, 1666, he gave his age as sixty-five years, showing his birth to have been about 1601. His will shows his death to have occurred, per date of the instrument and filing of the inventory and probating of the will, between May 8 and May 22, 1677. The spelling of the name has been various in this country, but Cummings appears to be the standard form. We take no note of the numerous traditions tracing the connection back to a Scottish clan which flourished from 1080 to 1330, also to 1093, to the times of Malcolm III, also the name as taken from the town of Comines in France. These are treated in full in the different genealogies which have been published upon the subject of the family. In 1639 Isaac Cummings owned a house and lot in Ipswich village, and also possessed land being partly in Ipswich and partly in Tops- field. He was made a freeman in 1642, and at different periods bought more or less land. He was called Goodman, was chosen grand juryman in 1675, and was moderator of the town meeting in 1676, and deacon of the church in Topsfield for many years. When he arrived in this country he was for a brief period an inhabitant of Watertown. No mention remains of the name of his wife, and she was not living when his will was made."[5]


22 MAY 1677 Topsfield, Massachusetts (Essex)
8 MAY 1677 Ipswich, Essex County, Massachusetts[6]
Will of Isaac Cummings Sr
The last will and testament of Isaac Comins Senier. I, being sencable of my approaching desolution, being at present weak in body yet perfect in my understanding, having by the grace of God bene helped to provid for my future state in another world: doe now in ordering of what God hath been pleased to bestow upon me of the blessings of this life, take care and order that, in the first place, my debts be duly paid. nextly I doe by this my last will and testament confirme to my son Isaac the ten acres of division land, on the south side of the great river, be it more or less: nextly, I do give unto my son, John Juet, ten pounds, part in Cattel & part in household goods: nextly, I doe will and bequeath to my grandson, Isaac, the son of my son Itsaac, one year old hefer, one little sow, the Indian corn which he hath planted for himself and the flax which he hath sown.
Item, I doe give unto him my chest 2d in bigness with the lock and key: item my history book with such books as are his own, viz. a bible and testament. item, I doe give him ten pounds to be paid at seventeen years of age in country pay. item, I doe give my son, John Pease, thirty pounds to be payd out of the stock of cattle and household goods as much as may be att present & the rest in two years. Item, I doe make my son John my sole executor and doe give unto him my house and lands, being forty acres, more or less, consisting of upland and meadow with all the privileges and emoluments thereof and apertainances thereunto belonging provided that this land shall stand bound in part and in wholl for the payment of these legacyes and in case the said legacyes shall not be payd according to my will, the land shall be sold and payment be made out of the price thereof and the remainder shall be to the executor. Item, my will further is that if any of these my children shall through discontent att what is done for them in this my will, cause trouble to arise to the executor that then there shall be nothing pay'd to him or them, but the legacy or legacyes willed to them shall return to and remain in the hands of the executor as his proper right. My desire further is that Isaac Foster and Thomas Dorman would take care that this my will be duly performed.
Dated this 8th day of the 3d mth I677.
Witness the mark of Isaac Cummings.
John Poore Sr.
Thomas Dorman.
Isaac Foster.

Death BET 8 MAY 1677, date of Will and 22 MAY 1677, date Will probated, Ipswich, Essex County, Massachusetts


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 The New England Historical and Genealogical Register. Boston, MA: New England Historic Genealogical Society, 1847-. (Online database:, New England Historic Genealogical Society, 2001-2018.) Vol. 145, p. 239 - "Isaac Cummings of Essex County, Massachusetts" by John Plummer.
  2. Isaac Cummings Family Association, accessed 21 Nov 2015
  3. "English Notes on Isaac Cummings of Essex County. Massachusetts," by John Plummer; The New England Historical and Genealogical Register. Boston, MA: New England Historic Genealogical Society, 1847-. (Online database:, New England Historic Genealogical Society, 2001-2013.) NEHGR (April 1991) 145:239
  4. Cutter Page 797
  5. Cutter Page 818
  6. Cutter Page 797

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Comments: 11

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I just located online another version of the Albert Oren Cummins genealogy that I find easier to read. (Others' mileage will likely vary.) For anyone who wants to take a look, it can be found here:

posted by Carolyn Comings
The children of Isaac still need to be attached to the correct mother. I've changed the first child, Isaac bap. 1629, but the others still show Marie Kinsley as their mother. Should be Anne per John Plummer, "Isaac Cummings of Essex County, Massachusetts," NEHGR Vol. 145(1991):239-40 citing FHL film #460909 it. 2, Parish registers for Mistley, 1559-1926.
posted by Bobbie (Madison) Hall
Yes, thanks for catching that, Paul.
posted by Bobbie (Madison) Hall
Reference [2] on the list is blank. Is that supposed to be the same as Reference [1] <ref name=NEHGR145> ?
posted by Paul Gierszewski
Hearing no response regarding a source for the 2nd wife, "Marie Margaret Kinsley" I'm going to proceed to detach her; leaving appropriate notes on the profiles affected.

They could not have been married at Topsfield in 1632 because Isaac Cummings was married to Anne, and they did not migrate until 1635 (or there abouts).

Please indicate the source for the marriage to Marie Margaret (Kinsley) Cummings.

All the sources I have seen indicate only a wife named Ann (Unknown).

Thank you.

Since they received land grants at Watertown, Massachusetts in 1636 both Isaac and Anne are eligible to be in the Puritan Great Migration Project.

I added the project box.

Children of Isaac Sr. and Anne (ukn) Cummings were at least: John, Chr. 1630; Anne, Chr. 1634; Isaac, Chr. 1632; Probably was another Issac Chr. 1629. One Isaac died at age 3 in 1633, another was born in 1632 and lived to 1721 in Topsfield, Massachusetts.

Name Isaack Commen, Sex Male. Wife Anne. Son Isaack Commen. Name Isaack Commen, Christening. Event Date 17 Mar 1632. Event Place Mistley, Essex, England. Father's Name Isaack Commen. Mother's Name Anne.

Name Anne Commen, Female. Christening Date 22 Feb 1634. Christening Date 22 FEB 1634. Christening Place MISTLEY,ESSEX,ENGLAND. Father's Name Isaack Commen. Mother's Name Anne.

Name John Commen Male. Christening Date 09 May 1630. Event Place , Mistley, Essex, England. Father's Name Isaack Commen. Mother: Anne Commen.

England, Essex Parish Registers, 1538-1997," database, FamilySearch ( : 18 July 2017), Isaack Commen in entry for John Commen, 09 May 1630, Christening; citing , Mistley, Essex, England, Essex Record Office, England; FHL microfilm 560,909. Similar entries for children Anne and Issack.

posted by Clare Bromley III
Name Anne, Sex Female

Husband Isaack Commen Son John Commen Other information in the record of John Commen from England Births and Christenings Name John Commen Gender Male Christening Date 09 May 1630 Christening Date (Original) 09 MAY 1630 Christening Place MISTLEY,ESSEX,ENGLAND Father's Name Isaack Commen Mother's Name Anne Citation "England Births and Christenings, 1538-1975," database, FamilySearch ( : 11 February 2018, Anne in entry for John Commen, 09 May 1630); citing MISTLEY,ESSEX,ENGLAND, index based upon data collected by the Genealogical Society of Utah, Salt Lake City; FHL microfilm 560,909.

posted by Clare Bromley III
It appears that all FIVE children were the children of wife Ann. Is there any evidence for Isaac's 2nd marriage? I can't find any.
posted by Vic Watt
"The Great Migration Directory, Immigrants to New England, 1620-1640" by Robert Charles Anderson, FASG (2015) has Isaac Cummins arriving 1636. He could not have married 1632 in Topsfield, MA. NEHGR 145 (1991) says Isaac and wife Anne appear in Mistley parish registers from 20 May 1629 to 22 Feb 1634/5. This covers the baptisms of Isaac 20 May 1629 (buried 3 days later), John 9 May 1630, Isaac Jr 17 Mar 1632/3 and Anne 22 Feb 1634/5. This means that Anne (-----) Cummings is the mother of all 3.
posted by Fred Mulholland Jr