Surnames/tags: Merrifield Merefield
From the Daughters of the American Revolution application for Georgia Schlosser we learn the following information about Samuel Merrifield (Merrifield-162):
- born about 1720
- born in Great Brittain
- wife's given name is "Mary"
- died on 15 March 1781 in Mongalia, Virginia
Using a base birth date of 1720 and allowing for a +/- 5 year error, a search was conducted for "Samuel Merrifield, born 1715 to 1725, in England, United Kingdom."
Only the following 4 results were returned:
- 1. Samuel Merrifield, baptized 28 Sep 1719 in Launceston, Cornwall, England, father's name is John Merrifield.
- 2. Saml. Merefield, baptized 21 Sep 1715 in Crewkerne, Somerset, Engand, father's name is Wm. Merefield.
- 3. Samuel Morrifield, baptized 15 Oct 1717 in Marys, Portsea, Hampshire, Englnd, father's name is John Morrifield (duplicate record with surname spelled Morrefield b. 15 Oct 1718 - likely transcription errors).
- 4. Samuel Merrifield, baptized 6 January 1717 at St. John of Wapping (Wapping Burough), Tower Hamlets, Middlesex, England, father's name is Richard, mother's name is Dinah.
The 4th record stands out because the mother's name, not a very common name in this time period, is the name that Samuel gave to his first daughter Dinah (Merrifield) Beck.
In addition, a baptism record was found for Elizabeth Overton (her father returns records for Overton and Overington) at the St. Mary (later St. Mary Matfelon) Church in Whitechaple, the burrough just northwest of Wapping. The distance between the two churches is less than 1.5 km (9/10th of a mile). The date of Elizabeth's Christening was 2 December 1717, less than a year from Samuel's birth. Based on the close proximity of these two records it is very possible that this Samuel and Elizabeth knew each other.
Through many family legends in America, it is believed that Samuel married Mary Elizabeth Overington (aka Bicknell). In the headright claim for transportation to the new world, Samuel appears with an Elizabeth Overington: they sailed to the new world together.
Richard and Dinah (also spelled Dynah) had six children. The first child was baptized less than a mile to the northeast of Wapping in Stepney at the St. Dunstan and All Saints Church. The next five children were born in Wapping. Richard was also baptized at the St. Dunstan church in 1686. His parents were Thomas Merifield and Mary (Unknown). The churches at Wapping, Whitechaple, and Stepney form a triangle about 1 mile on each side - a close proximity.
- Samuel Merrifield born in 1717 is the son of
- Richard Merrifield born in 1686 is the son of
- Thomas Merrifield, likely born before 1666.
- Samuel Merrifield named his first son Samuel,
- and his next son was named Richard,
- and his third son was named Thomas.
In addition, Richard's first three sons (Samuel and his brothers) were named:
The combination of these factors suggest that the Samuel Merrifield of Virginia who died in 1781 is likely the same Samuel Merrifield born 1717 in Wapping:
- The close proximity in birth location between Samuel Merrifield in Wapping and Elizabeth Overton/Overington in Whitechapel less than a mile away.
- The close proximities of their birthdates (11 months apart).
- The mother of Samuel Merrifield born in 1717 is Dinah, the same name as Samuel of Virginia gave to his first daughter.
- The headright claim that shows Samuel Merrifield and Elizabeth Overington in the same group to the new world.
- Samuel and Elizabeth's passge was paid by Valentin Sevier; later Samuel would buy this land proving that the Samuel Merrifield in the DAR record is the same Samuel who sailed with Elizabeth Overington in 1749.
- The naming of Samuel's sons match the name of Samuel b. 1717, his father, and grandfather.
- Same names of Samuel's brothers to his children and to thsoe of his father and grandfather.
The 1717 record is the best match and offers compelling evidence that it is the correct birth record for Samuel Merrifield (Merrifield-162).
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