Robert Hicks



Great Migration Begins: Immigrants to New England, 1620-33




1621 on


Fellmonger (in England).

In the "1633" list of Plymouth freemen, among those admitted before 1 January 1632/3 [PCR 1:3]. In list of 7 March 1636/7 [PCR 1:52]. In the Plymouth section of the 1639 Plymouth Colony list of freemen, with the annotation "dead" [PCR 8:173].

His inventory included "3 books" valued at 8s. His widow, Margaret, signed her will.

In the 1623 Plymouth division of land, "Robart Hickes" was granted one acre as a passenger on the
Fortune, and his wife and children were granted four acres as passengers on the Anne [PCR 12:5, 6]. In the 1627 Plymouth division of cattle Robert Hicks, Margaret Hicks, Samuel Hicks, Ephraim Hicks, Lydia Hicks and Phebe Hicks were the sixth through eleventh persons in the twelfth company [PCR 12:13].

   Assessed 18s. in the Plymouth tax list of 25 March 1633 and 12s. in the list of 27 March 1634 [PCR 1:9, 27]. "Robert Hickes" was thirty-seventh on the list of Purchasers [PCR 2:177].

   On 10 February 1629 Robert Hicks purchased two acres on the north side of town from Steven Dean [PCR 12:7]. On 29 August 1638 Clement Briggs acknowledged his sale of "one acre of land in the upper fall near the second brook" to "Mr. Rob[er]te Heeks" [PCR 12:34]. On 9 December 1639 "Mr. Rob[er]te Hicks" rented five acres at Reed Pond to John Smyth for three years, Smyth to fence the east side of the land [PCR 12:51]. On 13 July 1639 George Sowle acknowledged his sale of two acres of land to Robert Hicks of Plymouth [PCR 12:45]. On 20 July 1639 John Barnes of Plymouth, yeoman, acknowledged his sale of four acres of meadow at High Pynes to Mr. Robert Hicks [PCR 12;45]. On 11 February 1639[/40] Mr. Robert Hicks of Plymouth, planter, sold to Samuell Hicks his eldest son all his house, outhouses and garden in Plymouth, together with four acres of land and eight acres of land and all the meadow at the Heigh Pynes and Iland Creek, and all his right title and interest in the land, and three cows [PCR 12:54]. On 7 April 1642 Mr. Robert Hicks sold two acres of marsh at Heigh Pines to Mr. William Bradford [PCR 12:79]. On 7 May 1642 Mr. Robert Hicks sold seven acres of upland at Iland Creek to William Brett of Duxbury [PCR 12:80]. On the same day he acknowledged his deed to John Reynor of three acres of marsh meadow at Heigh Pynes [PCR 12:80]. On 9 October 1645 Mr. Robert Hicks sold to Georg Partrich a parcel of marsh meadow consisting of two acres [PCR 12:115].

   In his will, dated 28 May 1645 and proved 15 May 1648,
"Robert Hicks of Plymouth ... being full of infirmities of body" bequeathed to "my son Ephraim all that my dwelling house barn and buildings with the gardens ... in Plymouth," also "all those three fields one lying on the north side of the said town of Plymouth ..., the second which I lately purchased of Mr. John Aldin and the third called the south field"; "but my mind and will is that my executrix hereafter named shall have and enjoy three rooms in the said house during her life she keeping herself unmarried, viz. the hall and chamber over and cellar underneath, and also that my said son Ephraim shall pay her the thirds of the said lands during her life and widowhood"; to "my said son Ephraim all my lands lying at Iland Creek on Duxbery side except two lots of upland of twenty acres apiece lying next unto Mr. Kemp's lands, which I hereby give and bequeath unto John Banges my grandchild"; to "my executrix ... the rents of the said land not set and let forth for six years yet to come if she shall so long live, but all the rest of my lands ... I give unto my said son Ephraim"; "I give unto John Reyner the son of Mr. John Reyner our teacher fifty acres of the purchased lands accruing ... to me as a purchaser of my share of lands lying at Seawams or Secunck if the said Mr. John Reyner his father do remain at Plymouth"; to "Samuell my eldest son" fifty acres; to "my said son Ephraim" fifty acres; to "John Watson" fifty acres; to "John Bangs" fifty acres; to "the younger of Mr. Charls Chancy's sons which his wife had at one birth when he dwelt at Plymouth" fifty acres; to "my said son Ephraim" household goods; to the Town of Plymouth one cow calf; to "William Pontus" 20s.; to "John Faunce" 20s.; to "Nathaneell Morton" 20s.; to "Thomas Cushman" 20s.; "Margaret my loving wife" sole executrix and residue; Mr. John Howland, Mannasses Kempton and Thomas Cushman overseers; to John Howland and Mannasses Kemton 10s. each for a remembrance; to Joshua Prat "a suit of my wearing clothes with a pair of shoes and stockings"; to Samuell Eddy a pair of wearing stockings; to "my said son Ephraim ... my four oxen, paying my loving wife ... the thirds of the profits of the lands as is before mentioned ... and to draw her twenty loads of wood yearly to her house in Plymouth during her life" [MD 8:144-46, citing PCPR 1:1:703].

   The inventory of the estate of "Mr. Robert Hicks deceased the 24th of May 1647 taken the fifth of July in the year aforesaid also exhibited upon oath the 4th of May 1648" totalled 39 13s., with no real estate included [MD 8:143-44, citing PCPR 1:1:69].

   On 23 January 1648 John Rogers of Duxbury bought the rent of lands improved by Mr. Robert Hicks now deceased from Ephraim Hicks of Plymouth [PCR 12:155-56].

   On 1 May 1660 "Gorge Watson," on behalf of his son John Watson and nephew John Banges, requested that, because "Samuel Hickes" was mistakenly entered in the court records as purchaser of lands at Cushenah and Accoaksett, etc., and it should have been "Mr. Robert" Hickes, it be corrected; the matter was referred to a later court [PCR 3:186]. On 3 October 1662 "Samuell Hickes" was offered an equal division with others in the lands of Mr. Robert Hickes at Accushena, Coaksett, etc., but he declined [PCR 4:27]. Margaret and Samuel could not agree on the division of goods in Robert's estate and the matter was taken to court 7 June 1661 [PCR 3:217].

   On 7 October 1662 "Margarett Hickes of Plymouth, widow, as sole executrix to my husband Mr. Robert Hickes," confirmed his bequest of fifty acres to "Elnathan Chauncye the younger of the twins of Mr. Charles Chauncye" [MD 17:240-41, citing PCLR 2:2:107].

   On 22 March 1663[/4] "Mistris Hickes" and "Sam[uel] Hickes" were granted Lot 7 in the Plymouth lands at "Puncateesett Necke" [PTR 1:64].

   In her will, dated 8 July 1665 and proved 6 March 1665/6,
"Margarett Hickes widow of the town of Plymouth" bequeathed to "my son Samuell Hickes" 5; to "my daughter-in-law Lydia Hickes" 30s.; to "my son Samuell's children" 10s. each "there being seven of them"; said legacies to be paid by "son Samuell Hickes" from his debt "he having already received a large portion of that which God hath given me not only in lands but also in goods and chattels which was not only my husband's and son Ephraim's estate formerly but also given to me by will at my son Ephraim's death"; to "my grandchild John Banges" 40s.; residue to "the children of my son-in-law Gorg Watson and my loving daughter that is deceased Phebe Watson," also said estate to be "at the dispose of my son-in-law Gorg Watson"; "my son-in-law Gorg Watson and my friend Captain Southworth" overseers [PCPR 2:2:32, abstracted in MD 16:157-58].

   The inventory of Margaret Hickes, taken 5 March 1665[/6], totalled 53 12s. 6d. and included no real estate [PCPR 2:2:33, abstracted in MD 16:158]. On 6 March 1665/6 "Gorge Watson" was granted administration on the estate of "Mistris Margarett Hickes, deceased" [PCR 4:117].

By about 1578 based on estimated date of marriage.

Plymouth 24 May 1647 (from inventory). (Savage and Pope both give this date as 24 March, apparently based on the abstract of the inventory published in 1850 [NEHGR 4:282]. On the original the month of death is in the upper right corner of the page, and is worn, so that only "Ma" can now be read on microfilm. Bowman saw this as May, and his reading is followed here.)

By 1603 Margaret _____; she died at Plymouth between 8 July 1665 (date of will) and 6 March 1665/6 (probate of will).

(first eight baptized at St. Mary Magdalen, Bermondsey, Surrey [TAG 51:58]):
   i   THOMAS, bp. 19 February 1603/4; bur. 23 April 1604.

   ii   JOHN, bp. 12 October 1605; no further record.

   iii   SARA, bp. 25 October 1607; bur. 24 February 1617/8.

   iv   RICHARD, bp. 17 September 1609; no further record.

   v   SAMUEL, bp. 18 August 1611; m. Plymouth 11 September 1645 Lydia Doane [PCR 2:88], daughter of JOHN DOANE.

   vi   LYDIA, bp. 6 September 1612; m. by about 1633 EDWARD BANGS.

   vii   PHOEBE, bp. 15 March 1614/5; m. by about 1636 George Watson (their daughter Phebe m. Jonathan Shaw on 22 January 1656 [PVR 662]).

   viii   MARY, bp. 11 May 1617; bur. 14 September 1619.

   ix   EPHRAIM, b. Plymouth about 1625; m. Plymouth 13 September 1649 Elizabeth Howland [PCR 8:8], daughter of JOHN HOWLAND; Ephraim Hicks d. 12 December 1649 "a violent death" [PCR 3:202] and his widow m. (2) Plymouth 10 July 1651 John Dickenson [PCR 8:13].

The major breakthrough on this family was made when Robert S. Wakefield discovered additional baptismal entries in the St. Mary Magdalen, Bermondsey, register [TAG 51:57-58].

   Several sources give Robert Hicks two wives: Elizabeth Morgan and Margaret Winslow. No record has been found of any marriage for Robert Hicks, and his only known wife was Margaret; the argument that Margaret was a Winslow has little basis [TAG 54:31-34].

   Clement Briggs of Weymouth, fellmonger, deposed 29 August 1638 that about two and twenty years since this deponent then dwelling with one Mr. Samuell Lathame in Barmundsey Streete in Southwarke a fellmonger and one Thomas Harlow then also dwelling with Mr. Rob[er]te Heeks in the same street a fellmonger the said Harlow and this deponent had often conference together how many pelts each of their master pulled a week. And this deponent deposeth and saith that the said Rob[er]te Heeks did pull three hundred pelts a week and diverse times six or seven hundred & more a week in the killing seasons, which was the most part of the year (except the time of Lent) for the space of three or four years. And that the said Rob[er]te Heeks sold his sheep's pelts at that time for 40s. a hundred to Mr. Arnold Allard, whereas this deponent's Mr. Samuell Lathame sold his pelts for 50s. per hundred to the same man at the same time and Mr. Heeks pelts were much better ware [PCR 12:35].

   On 13 July 1639 Robert Hicks of Plymouth, "citizen & leatherseller of London," by a bill dated 6 July 1618 was indebted to Thomas Heath, citizen & cooper of London for 180, which amount was demanded by letter of attorney made by Hannah Cugley but Hicks showed an acquittance of all debts to Heath, having paid it long ago [PCR 12:43].

   On 6 March 1649[/50] administration of the estate of Ephraim Hickes was granted to Margaret Hicks and Thomas Willet [PCR 2:148]. The nuncupative will made by Ephraim to Mr. Thomas Southworth was set aside, Ephraim being "not in a capacity in regard of his said manner of death to make a legal will" [PCR 3:202]. The court ordered that Ephraim's estate be set aside for the benefit of his mother, "Mistris Margaret Hickes," but the order was not recorded and Margaret had to go back to court many years later to insist it be recorded, 3 December 1660 [PCR 3:203].

In 1938 Louis Effingham deForest compiled a comprehensive summary of all that was known about Robert Hicks at that date [Moore Anc 295-308]. (This summary includes children Elizabeth and Daniel, for whom there is no evidence.)