||John Gregory Sr. migrated to New England during the Puritan Great Migration (1621-1640).|
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John Gregory, was the only child of Henry Gregory named in his 1655 estate distribution. John’s mother is unknown. He was born about 1612-1615 probably in Nottinghamshire, where the Gregory family lived.
The Gregory family came to New England after 1635 (death of Henry’s child) and before 1639 (Henry’s land was mentioned).
John's wife was Sarah ____. They were probably married in New England. Their oldest child was born say 1640.
"John Gregory is graunted six acres of Land at west end of the new field, and the next garden place above Robte Paddock.", on 7 Jan 1638/9. This land had passed to other hands by 26 Oct 1640." Mathew Fuller was paid by Andre Ringe of Plymouth for his garden place in Plymouth and six acres of land in the New field which "Mathew lately bought of John Gregory..." Robert Charles Anderson in the Great Migration Directory has not associated this person with the John of New Haven and Norwalk. It would be an unusual move.
24 Feb 1644/5, John Gregory was admitted a member of the Court at New Haven, giving him the right to vote and hold office and indicating he was a member of the church.
25 May 1646 "It was ordered that brother Seely & brother Gregory doe looke that noe hydes come out of the tanners hands but those that are well tanned, & that they seale them if they doe allowe them, & that they have 41 p hyde for veweing & sealing of them."
2 Mar 1646/7 John and two others bought of Mr. Evance £300 of his "proportions" which were to be settled on them.
10 Mar 1646/7 Seates were assigned in the meeting house. John was assigned the 8th row in the middle seats, a very choice seat. His wife, Sister Gregory, was assigned the equivalent seat on the women’s side.
31 Jan 1647/8. "John Gregory propounded to the courte, that a good while sinc their was a pare of shooes spake of in courte wch he sould William Paine, of the tenns , French falls, at 5s 10d, at wch their was some offenc taken, and he condemes himselfe that he hath lett it lye so longe vncleared, but now he presented a noat in courte wch showed the perticulers howe they did amount to so much, vnder two shooemakers hands, but the court professed they could not see cause shooes should be sould at this rate."
When John Meggs bought Henry Gregory to court in Dec 1647. John testified that Meggs told his father, the bad shoes were good enough, and also the he had cautioned Meggs "because his father was old and his eyesight failed hime, and he durst not imploye hime himeselfe, for he could not doe as he had done." This was not the end of the controversies between John Meggs and John Gregory. 6 Jun 1648, Lt Seely, sealer of leather, said he saw some leather not fit to be sealed, some belonging to Abraham Doolittle, John Chidsey and John Gregory. John Meggs became involved in the controversy accusing Gregory of faulty work, but the court ended up fining Meggs.
It seems that John spent a few years in Stratford, where his father lived. Early land records in Stratford were burned in 1650. John Peacock purchased two house lots and land from John Gregory before 1653. John’s double home lot was on the west side of Main St. between South Ave and Birdsey St. and across the street from his brother-in-law Crooker.
Founding a town, because of the smaller population, causes people who otherwise might never have become public figures, to step into leadership roles. John is a good example of this.
Newark, New Jersey: In 1667, New Haven and some of the nearby towns, negotiated to create a new settlement, where Newark, New Jersey, is now located. John was one of the main negotiators and was assigned a lot there, which he never occupied.
The early Norwalk church records were destroyed (by rats), but we do know that in 1664, he and John Bow undertook to lay in 5000 lb. of good clapboards for building a meeting house, and that in 1686, he and seven others occupied the prestigious seat next to the deacons seat.
John had a four acre homelot and purchased another four acre lot from Stephen Beckwith to build a shop. He at one time received from James the Indian rights to "Cokkanus Island" which later the town laid claim to, for common property. He also acquired other lots including Gregory’s Point (now a country club). The year he died he gave most of his lands to his sons.
John signed his will 15 Aug 1689, and it was presented to probate by the widow 9 Oct 1689. He gave his wife his cattle and movable goods in house and shop, also his book of accounts and bills of debt owing to him. The land not previously disposed of was to be sold and the money split between his two daughters, mentioning the sons-in-law James and John Benedict.
Sarah signed her will, by mark, the same day, 9 Oct 1689. "I, Sarah Gregory, widow of John of Norwalk, do choose my beloved friends Mr. Thomas Hanford [the minister] and Sergt. John Plat to distribute to my children according to instruction and directions I have left in their hand as to pertickular movables," They were given full power over the rest. The inventory of her estate was taken 28 Oct 1689. Valued at £215. 04.06 it shows a comfortable home, and well stocked barn and larder.
1 Nov 1689, sons John, Jakin, Judah, Joseph and Thomas Gregory, and John and James Benedict signed an agreement stating they were satisfied with the bequests of their mother. The Benedict’s received the seven and a half acres of Gregory point.
There is a memorial monument to the settlers of Norwalk, including John, in the East Norwalk Historical Cemetery, Norwalk
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John is 22 degrees from Margaret O'Bryan, 17 degrees from Osla Henniker-Major, 15 degrees from Alice of Greece, 16 degrees from Honoré d'Estienne d'Orves, 17 degrees from Einar Korsvig Rasmussen, 16 degrees from Nancy Forward, 23 degrees from Raoul Wallenberg, 18 degrees from Susan Cuddy, 14 degrees from Hannah Love, 32 degrees from Dorie Miller and 15 degrees from Joseph Rochefort on our single family tree. Login to find your connection.