Although Cape Cod birth records for the period were destroyed in a 19th Century fire, the best evidence is that Mary, who married Henry Ewer (aka Euer/Eure) in 1651 and then, after Henry's sudden death, John Jenkins in Feb. 1653, was the youngest daughter of Ralph Wallen Jr. and his wife, Joyce (Nail ?) Wallen (aka Walling). Mary was born in 1628 in Plymouth colony, New England. Her parents had arrived there in 1623 from London, aboard HMS "Anne," the same ship that carried Nicholas Snow, who remained a life-long friend of the Wallen (aka Walling / Walden) family. Nicholas' 4th son, John B. Snow, Sr. married Ralph & Joyce's grand-daughter, Mary Smalley. Ralph Wallen Jr. was a tailor by trade.
It's not known why Barnstable County historian, Col. Leonard H. Smith, chose to call Mary Ewer Jenkins "a Quakeress," as espousing that highly-controversial religion would have been unthinkable in the mid-17th Century Plymouth colony, ruled with an iron-fist by tough, orthodox, Puritan clergymen and their followers. No fewer than four publically-active Quakers, including one woman, Mary Dyer, were convicted and actually hanged for crimes against God and the State in neighboring Boston at the time. It's more accurate is to describe the contemporary Ewer, Lathrop, Wallen, Smalley and Snow families of Plymouth as "private dissenters," who prudently kept their more-unorthodox religious opinions to themselves, while outwardly professing Puritan beliefs but espousing tolerance for alternative views (a rarity in that time and place). This led them and a dozen other similarly-inclined families to move together across the bay, founding Eastham and Barnstable on Cape Cod in 1644-1646.
Henry Ewer, Mary's first husband, was born in 1629 in Kent, England. He emigrated to New England from Kent in 1638, following his parents who'd arrived 3 years earlier with their 2 younger children. Their 2 older boys, already in school no doubt, came over later with their grandfather, making the family move permanent. The Ewer family were definitely "political dissenters" and possibly secret members of the Society of Friends (Quakers) in England. Henry would have sought out and married someone of at-least "open" religious views and he found her in Mary Wallen. They married in Eastham (Cape Cod), Barnstable County, in 1651. Alas, Henry Ewer unexpectedly died in the winter following their nuptials, leaving Mary (Wallen) Ewer a young, childless widow.
Mary soon found protection and a new life with a man 20 years her senior: John Jenkins, himself a recent widower with a small baby boy (Zechariah Jenkins, b: 7 July 1651 in Sandwich, Barnstable County; mother: Susannah (Cooke) Jenkins). They married in Barnstable, Barnstable Co., Plymouth colony, on February 3, 1653, where John was a prominent landowner and a Town Freeman. Born in 1609 in London, England, John had emigrated to Massachusetts Bay colony in 1635 and joined the Snows, Lathrops and Smalleys in founding Nauset (Eastham) in 1646, indicating he too had "liberal" religious beliefs. John and Mary Jenkins most likely lived on the Ewer Farm in Barnstable, near “Coggin’s Pond,” as it was then called. This pond is passed on the left going into the village of Barnstable from West Barnstable on the State highway not far from the local Unitarian church.
John and Mary (Wallen) Jenkins had 7 children, all in Barnstable (Cape Cod), Plymouth Colony:
Both John and Mary (Wallen) Jenkins lived long and prosperous lives after their early-life tragedies. John Jenkins died in Barnstable in 1684. Mary survived him and died in Barnstable, Barnstable County, Province of Massachusetts Bay (as of 1691), New England, about April 5, 1693. No burial place has been found for either of the couple but they are likely buried at the Old Burying Grounds in Barnstable in now-unmarked graves.
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