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John Punderson (bef. 1618 - 1681)

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John Punderson aka Ponderson
Born before in Rowley, Yorkshire, Englandmap [uncertain]
Son of [father unknown] and [mother unknown]
[sibling(s) unknown]
Husband of — married [location unknown]
Descendants descendants
Died in New Haven, New Haven, Connecticut Colonymap
Profile last modified | Created 21 Sep 2010
This page has been accessed 399 times.

Categories: Signers of the New Haven Fundamental Agreement | New Haven, New Haven Colony | New Haven, Connecticut Colony | Given name J challenge, Biography Builders | Puritan Great Migration.

The Puritan Great Migration.
John Punderson migrated to New England during the Puritan Great Migration (1620-1640).
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John Punderson, who settled in New Haven Colony, came to New England with a group of families led by Ezekiel Rogers,[1][2] a minister from Rowley Parish, Yorkshire. Rogers and his group arrived in Boston in December 1638, having sailed from Hull, England, aboard the "John of London."[3][4] Rogers was persuaded to join the group at Quinnipiac, but later changed his mind, and eventually founded the town of Rowley, Massachusetts. However, in the mean time, some of his company preceded him to New Haven. Some returned to Massachusetts, but some like John Punderson remained in New Haven.[5]

He was an original proprietor of New Haven and signed New Haven's "Fundamental Agreement" 4 June 1639.[6] His signing this document indicates that he was at least 21, so born before 1618. The Fundamental Agreement was the basis of New Haven's government. A "committee" of twelve was chosen and out of this twelve, seven were chosen for the "foundation work" of the church. John Punderson was one of these "seven pillars." [7][8] Of the "Seven Pillars," four left New Haven. John Punderson was one of the three who stayed.

The "Seven Pillars" did not spend a long time, getting the church established and 25 Oct 1639 they gave up their former trust in court, and the New Haven freeman then chose the Magistrate and four Deputies for the following year.[9]

John was, as indicated by his voting status, a freeman[10] and took the Oath of Fidelity in 1644, when it was first administered.[11]

Officers for the year were generally chosen at court held in the spring and during his life, John held public office: 1645,[12] 1665[13] Fenceviewer; 1653,[14] 1654,[15] 1666[16] Townsman; 1670,[17] 1671[18], Treasurer. An audit of his accounts found that eleven pounds were due the town, and John was instructed to see to getting the amount remitted.[19] He was chosen to view measures 19 May 1656;[20] as Heyward in 1676;.[21] as constable 18 Dec 1676;[22] and as sealer of weights and measures in April 1680.[23]

He also served on committees,[24] was assigned tasks in his quarter,[25] and appraised estates,[26] all activities that were a regular part of living in the Colony of New Haven.

From the records, John led an uneventful life. In 1659, John reported that the fence was so bad around the “corne field in ye ox-pasture” that the corn was in danger. It was ordered that all interested should meet at Punderson's at 5 o’clock to consider some way to repair the fence “for ye prservation of the corne, lest God be provoked”[27] Another time, John was to be cow keeper for the day. He went home sick, leaving the other man in charge and did not return. Thomas Powell lost a cow he believed by John's neglect. It couldn’t be determined by the court which side was correct, so the two men were asked to split the cost.[28] The town and colony records do not report a single fine assessed against John.

The settlement of New Haven was divided into nine squares. John Punderson lived in the second square (top middle on the map), known as the Yorkshire Quarter, because it was populated by those who had come from Yorkshire.[29] About 1641, John was on a list of planters. He had 2 persons, an estate of L180, about 99 acres and paid a rate of L00:15:06 to the town.[30] He received grants of land from the town[31] He bought a house, barn and home lot etc. from Mr. Wakeman, 7 June 1659,[32] and he sold land with a house and barn etc. to Mr. Tuttle, 7 May 1661.[33]. On a Dec 1680 list, John had 8 persons in his household, an estate of L180 and 68 acres.[34]

John married Margaret, whose maiden name is unknown. Their children were baptized 1642 and 1644 in New Haven by the Reverend Davenport.[35] They both had seats assigned in the meeting house.[36]

"Jn°: Punderfon dyed ye 11th day of february 1680"[37] 1680/1.[38] He and his wife were probably buried in the Churchyard of the Center Church, which is now the New Haven Town Green. No tombstones are left.

John Ponderson Sr. wrote his will Apr 24, 1679, leaving his estate to his wife Margaret, son John, daughter Hannah Gibbs, and to four grandchildren. An inventory was taken 15 Mar 1680/1 by John Winston, sr and Abram Dickerman valued at L327:11:03."Abstracts of the Early Probate Records of New Haven, Book I, Part I, 1647-1687.[39]

John and Margaret were the parents of the following children.[40]

  1. Hannah bpt. May, 1642,(NHC1) d. Feb. 11, 1681,?Savage; d/ 18 Jan 1715/6NHV[38] m. 27 Oct 1670 NHV John Gibbs[38]; m. (2) John slauson of Stamford[38]
  2. John b. 1643 (calculated from age on gravestone,) bpt. Oct., 1644;[38] died 23 Jan 1729/30 NHV[38]; m. Damaris Atwater.[38]

Note: The records usually call him Ponderson not Punderson.


  1. Calder, Isabel MacBeath. The New Haven Colony. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1934. p. 70 (Ancestry image #78). Calder cites as her authority : Thomas Lechford Note-Book pp 1, 208.
  2. Lechford, Thomas. Note-book kept by Thomas Lechford, esq., lawyer, in Boston, Massachusetts bay, from June 27, 1638, to July 29, 1641. Hale, Edward Everett, (editor). Cambridge: John Wilson and Son, 1885. pp 208, footnote 2, footnote 243. This indicates by certain legal matters that John was a member of Roger's group.
  3. Wikipedia Article, Ezekiel Rogers
  4. Atwater's History of the Colony of New Haven places the arrival of Rogers earlier - October 1638 - and aboard the "Humber"
  5. Atwater, Edward Elias, and Lucy M. Hewitt, and Bessie E. Beach. History of the Colony of New Haven to Its Absorption Into Connecticut By . Meriden, Connecticut: 1902 pp 81-83
  6. Source: #Hoadley1 p. 17
  7. Source: #Hoadley1 p 16
  8. I believe John and Thomas Fugill were chosen because they were members of the group from Yorkshire and were there to represent the Yorkshire interests. ~~~~
  9. Source: #Hoadley1 p. 20
  10. Source: #Hoadley1 p. 9
  11. Source: #Hoadley1p.137
  12. Source: #Hoadley1 p. 228
  13. Source: #Dexter2 p. 141, 335
  14. Source: #Dexter1 p. 180
  15. Source: #Dexter1 p. p. 213
  16. Source: #Dexter2 p. 176
  17. Source: #Dexter2 p. 263
  18. Source: #Dexter2 p. 289
  19. Source: #Dexter2 p. 346, 367
  20. Source: #Dexter1 p. 277
  21. Source: #Dexter2 p. 353
  22. Source: #Dexter2 p. 355
  23. Source: #Dexter2 p. 397
  24. Source: #Hoadley1 p. 41 p 408.
  25. Source: #Dexter2 p. 347
  26. Source: #Dexter1 p. 462
  27. Source: #Dexter1 p. 404
  28. Source: #Dexter1 2nd 4 mo 1657. p. 314
  29. See map
  30. Source: #Hoadley1 p. 93
  31. Source: #Hoadley1 p. 49, 94, p 196.
  32. Source: #Dexter1 p. 405
  33. Source: #Dexter1 p. 481
  34. Source: #Dexter2 p 409
  35. Baptisms in New Haven 1642 May Annah; 1644 Oct John The New England Historical and Genealogical Register. Boston, MA: New England Historic Genealogical Society, 1847-. (Online database:, New England Historic Genealogical Society, 2001-2013.) Register 9:362
  36. Atwater, Edward Elias, and Lucy M. Hewitt, and Bessie E. Beach. History of the Colony of New Haven to Its Absorption Into Connecticut By . Meriden, Connecticut: 1902. pp. 543, 544, 546, 548, 550, 552
  37. Vital Records of New Haven 1649-1850 Part I. Hartford: The Connecticut Society of the Order of the Founders and Patriots of America, 1917. p. 49.
  38. 38.0 38.1 38.2 38.3 38.4 38.5 38.6 Jacobus, Donald Lines (compiler). Families of Ancient New Haven, Vol I-VIII. and Index Vol IX New Haven: 1931. Reprint, Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc., 1974, 1981, 1997. Originally published as New Haven Genealogical Magazine, Volumes I-VIII. Rome, NY and New Haven, CT 1922-1932.
  39. " New England Historical and Genealogical Register 81:121. Boston: NEHGS, 1927. p 130 At AmericanAncestors (pay site)
  40. Savage, James. A Genealogical Dictionary of the First Settlers of New England Showing Three Generations of Those Who Came Before May, 1692. Vol. I-IV. Boston, MA, USA: 1860-1862. (Vol. 3, p. 493/4):

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No known carriers of John's Y-chromosome or his mother's mitochondrial DNA have taken yDNA or mtDNA tests.

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On 10 Aug 2016 at 17:54 GMT Anne B wrote:

His son was a deacon. Town and colony records never call him deacon, nor do they call him Jonathan, although sometimes the abbreviation can be mistaken for Jonathan. And of course he had no middle name.

John is 15 degrees from Claude Monet, 19 degrees from Gigi Tanksley and 17 degrees from Victoria of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland on our single family tree. Login to find your connection.

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