||Elizabeth (Godfrey) Cary migrated to New England during the Puritan Great Migration (1620-1640).|
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Elizabeth, the wife of John Cary of Duxbury, Braintree and Bridgewater in 1667, was the daughter of Francis Godfrey. His parentage of her is established by his February 1666/7 will, which refers to "my daughter Elizabeth Cary" and "my son-in-law John Carye Senior." Elizabeth's mother was probably Elizabeth (Unknown) Godfrey, who was Francis Godfrey's wife at the time of his death. That probability is based on (1) the fact that there is no evidence that Francis had a prior wife and (2) the fact both his wife's name and his daughter's name were Elizabeth.
Secondary sources consistently show that John Cary married Elizabeth Godfrey in June 1644 and indicate that she was his only wife. However, the almost 27-year gap between John's marriage in June 1644 and the birth of his last child in February 1670/1 means that, if John only had one wife, she would have to have been only about 18 when she had gotten married and about 45 when her last child was born (or about 17 and about 44, etc.). This suggests that it should be suspected that he had multiple wives. Apart form the 27-year date span, however, the evidence is consistent with the proposition that John Cary had only one wife: Elizabeth Godfrey. A Plymouth Colony Court record establishes that John Cary married a woman named Elizabeth in June 1644. From Francis Godfrey's November 1666/7 will, it is established that John was married to Elizabeth Godfrey at that time. Francis Godfrey's will also included bequests to John Cary's two oldest children of John Cary (John and Elizabeth), which he called his grandchildren. These bequests strongly suggest that Elizabeth Godfrey was the mother of John Cary's oldest children, which supports the proposition that Elizabeth Godfrey was the Elizabeth that John married in June 1644. In addition, the record of the death of John Cary's wife in 1680 states that her first name was Elizabeth, which is consistent with the proposition that she was Elizabeth Godfrey. Therefore, while the 27-year gap between his marriage in June 1644 and the February 1670/1 date of birth of his last child suggests the possibility (if not the probability) that he had multiple wives, the other available evidence is consistent with the proposition Elizabeth Godfrey was his only wife.
Assuming that Elizabeth Godfrey was John Cary's only wife and married him in June 1644 and had her last child in February 1670/1, she was probably born about 1626, which would have made her 18 when she got married and 45 when she had her last child.
Elizabeth's place of birth is unknown. Since, as discussed in the profile for her father Francis Godfrey, he probably immigrated about 1638, Elizabeth was not born in New England and was very probably born somewhere in England. However, since her father's residency before her immigrated to New England is unknown, it is unknown where in England she was born.
Assuming John Cary did not have two wives named Elizabeth, Elizabeth Godfrey married John Cary in June 1644, as established by a Plymouth Colony court record that states that "John Carew and Elizabeth _____ marryed the ____ June, 1644."
Torrey suggests that Elizabeth Godfrey and John Cary were probably married at either Duxbury or Braintree. Of the two, Duxbury seems much more likely, since Francis Godfrey and John Cary both probably lived in Duxbury at the time and John Cary's first child was born there.
John Cary and (presumably) Elizabeth had the following children:
The first Bridgewater town record book contains an entry for the death of John Carey senior, followed by an entry that states "And his wife whose name is Elizabeth Deceased the 1 of November 1680. Thus, assuming that John Cary did not marry a second wife named Elizabeth, Elizabeth (Godfrey) Cary died on November 1, 1680.
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