John Bryant Sr.1 of Taunton, Ma.

There is very little known about him, other than that he may have been the John Bryant who came over on the Fourtune in 1621. He was one of the 46 original purchasers of what is now Taunton, Ma. The first settlement there was about 1637 and he died 28 Apr 1638. His oral will was the first will admitted to the Plymouth Court from Taunton on 17 Jun 1638. At this hearing a Richard Paul and William Cradding testified that the said John two days before he died at Cohannack, had declared this will to them. All his goods and chattels to John, his son; except a platter and a bottle which he gave to Richard Paul; and that he desired that a Mr. John Gilbert, to take charge of his property for his son. Inventory was taken by Mrs. Elizabeth Poole, Mrs. Jane Poole, William Cradding and Richard Paul. Value was f43. Likewise, his death was the first to be recorded in Taunton.

From this will, we find no mention of a wife or any issue, other than the son John Jr. The Mr. Gilbert was to hold the property for this son. Thus, John Jr. was not of age in 1638. He is also not on the 1643 list of those males between the ages of 16 & 60, able to bear arms within the Plymouth Colony. Thus he was not yet 16 years of age in 1643, and had to be born after 1627. The reason for my view, is because it has been written that this John Jr. was the John Sr. of Scituate. These dates I feel, refute this theory.

The next time that a John Bryant of Taunton is mentioned in the records, is on 3 Jun 1652, (which would make him about age 25) when he was brought before the Plymouth Court for exchanging a musket for a fowling piece with the Indians. A John Bryant Jr. was admitted a freeman at Taunton in 1654 and took the oath of fidelity in 1657. In 1659 he is on a list of those intitled to a division of lands at Taunton. On 25 May 1680, he is on a list giving the names of the property owners of Taunton, which states in part, "John Bryant on the right which was his fathers". In 1684, a John made out his will and died in 1693. (age about 66) In his will, he leaves all to his wife Elizabeth, and a son, John. (now we have another John) No John is listed again until 27 Sep 1710, when a John Briant is married in Taunton to a Abigail Holloway.

Therefore, I believe that we can justly say that John Bryant Sr. of Taunton, whose origin is not known, lived and died in Taunton, and that his only son, John Jr. should not be confused with any of the other John's in the Plymouth Colony at this period of time. To wit, John Sr. and his son, John Jr. of Scituate, nor with John Sr. of Plymouth, the son of Stephen Sr. of Plymouth, nor with the Lt. John of Plympton, who married Abigail, daughter of Stephen Sr.

(Sorry, the above is all I could find on him)

If you know of more information, please let me know.
Was told that most of the old records were lost in a fire.

I have included a SURNAME INDEX to help you find whom you want to locate. Have fun and if you find any errors please let me know. Your more than welcome to add to what I have here or to fill in some of the missing blanks.

Surname Index

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