Family:Whitney, Thomas (s1600-1674)

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Thomas1 Whitten/Whitton/Whiton/Whitney/Whitteney, parentage unknown, was born about 1600, probably in Smarden, Kent, England,[1] and died in Plymouth, MA, before the date of his inventory in 1673/4.[2]

He married firstly, 7 Oct 1625, St. Mary Magdalen, Canterbury, Kent, England, Audrey/Aphra (Cock/Cook/Cork) Morecock,[3] parentage unknown. She was born about 1591, probably in Egerton, Kent, England,[4] and died probably before Dec 1638, Plymouth, MA.[5]. She had married firstly, 4 Jun 1616, St. Margaret's Canterbury, Kent, England, Henry Morecock "of Smarden",[6] son of Nicholas and June (Mele) Morecock. He was baptized 28 Aug 1586, Hothfield, Kent, and was buried 23 May 1625, Smarden, Kent. He had married firstly, before 1613, ----- -----.

He married secondly, 22 Nov 1639, Plymouth, MA, Winyfride Harding,[7] parentage and birth unknown. She died 23 Jul 1660, Plymouth, MA.[8]

He married thirdly, after 1 Feb 1660/1 and before 1 Mar 1669, Plymouth, MA, Patience (Morton) Faunce,[9] daughter of George and Julian (Carpenter) Morton.[10] She was born about 1614,[11] and died 16 Aug 1691 aged 77 years.[12] She had married firstly, about 1631, Plymouth, MA, John Faunce, who died 29 Nov 1653, Plymouth, MA.[13]

The family came to America on the "Elizabeth and Ann", Roger Cooper, Master, in the late spring of 1635. "Theis underwritten names are to be transported per Certificate from ye Minister of Bennundin, in Kent, of their Conformitie to the Orders and discipline of the Church of England." Listed among the passengers, but not together or in this order, are Thomas Whitton, 36, Audrey Whitton, 45, Bennet Morecock, 16, Nico Morecock, 14, Marie Morcock, 10, and Jerrmy Whitton, 8.[14]

"On 13 August 1636, Mary Moorecock, by her own voluntary will, and with the consent of her stepfather, was apprenticed to Richard Sparrow for nine years. ... Sarah Hoskins was apprenticed on 18 January 1643/44 with the consent of her father, to Thomas and Winifred Whitney until she became twenty years old."[15]

"HARDING, MARTHA -- ... There were other Hardings in the area, such as the John Harding on the 1643 ATBA for Duxbury; the Phebe Harding who married John Browne on 26 March 1634 (PCR 1:26); and the Winifred Harding who married Thomas Whitton on 22 November 1639 (PCR 1:139); but no relationship is known with Martha Harding."[16]

The 1643 "Able to Bear Arms (ATBA) List" for Plymouth includes the names of Thomas Whitney and Jeremiah Whitney.[17]

"In Dec 1642, [John] Barnes sold to Edward Edwards the properties he had purchased from Thomas Hill and from [John] Combes and [Phineas] Pratt for £16. ... In October 1644, Edwards sold the same lands to Thomas Whitney for £9/2/6, which Whitney was to pay Barnes."[18]

Thomas Whiton (Whitten, Whitney) of Plymouth came in the Elizabeth and Anne, Roger Cooper, Master, along with those who were to be transported per a certificate from "ye minister of Benenden in Kent of their conformities to ye order and discipline of the Church of England & yt they are no Subsidy Men," 12 May 1635 (Charles Edward Banks, The Planters of the Commonwealth (1930), p.156). He is called of Benenden, Kent. With him came his wife Audrey, age 45, Bennett Moorecocke, age 16, Nicholas Moorecocke, age 14, Mary Moorcocke, 10, Jeremy Whiton, age 8. Accordingly, Jeremy (or Jeremiah as he was later called) was born in 1627. In C. E. Banks' manuscripts re Martha's Vineyard families we find: (1) "4 June 1616 - Henry Moorecocke of Smarden, broadweaver, and Aphra (Audria) Cook of Egerton to be married at St. Margarets, Canterbury. John Hooker, Edgerton, clothier, bondsman" and (2) "Thomas Whitten of Smarden, broadweaver, bachelor aged about 25, and Audrian Moorecocke, same parish, widow, about 34, relict of Henry Moorecocke, late of the same parish, deceased, to be married at St. Mary Magdalen, Canterbury, 5 Oct. 1625. Were married 7 or 1 Oct. 1625 - Parish Register."

We find Thomas Whiton in Plymouth by 1636. On 5 March 1637/8 "A garden place at Wellingsley is granted to Thomas Whitton and seven acres of land upon Woberry Playne that he hath to be part of it" (Nathaniel B. Shurtleff, ed. Records of the Colony of New Plymouth in New England (1855), vol. 1, p. 78). Thomas and Jeremiah Whiton are on the list of men between the ages of 16 and 60 able to bear arms in 1643. He served many times on juries (Shurtleff op. cit.).

Just when Audrey Whiton died is not known but it was probably before December 1638 when her daughter Mary "with the consent

[p. 229]

of her father-in-law put herself apprentice with Richard Sparrow of Plymouth and Pandora, his wife". (Mary married 16 July 1649 William Brown and moved to Eastham, Mass. Frederick Johnson Simmons, author of "A Few Descendants of William Brown of Eastman, Mass.", is in error in calling her Mary Murdock.) Thomas Whiton married (2) 22 Nov. 1639 Winyfride Harding (Shurtleff, op. cit., vol. 1, p. 134). It would appear that there were no children of this marriage but the couple brought up two foster children. The Whiton family in America states "In 1643, they adopted Sarah Hopkins, aged 6 years, until she should become twenty agreeing to be a father and mother to her, to instruct her in sewing, and to find meat, drink, apparel and lodging. If she married before she was twenty Thomas was to be paid for the remaining time as shall be judged by two 'indifferent' persons. It is conjectured that she was a sister or niece of Oceanus Hopkins, who was born at sea on the Mayflower." This is an error. Sarah was Sarah Hoskins, daughter of William (Hodgekins, Hodgeskins, Hodgskins, Hoggkins, Hoskins, Haskins) by his first wife Sarah Cushman. Sarah Cushman Hodgekins had apparently died either at the birth of her child or shortly after because William married secondly, in December 1638 Ann Haynes (Shurleff, op. cit., p. 107).

The second child taken by Thomas and Winyfride Whiton in 1649 was Jeremiah, the son of his step-daughter Bennet Morecocke who had married John Smith, Sr., of Plymouth.

Winyfride died 23 July 1660 at Plymouth and Thomas married (3) Patience Faunce, widow of John Faunce and daughter of George Morton. The inventory of the estate of Thomas Whitney was submitted by Patience Whitney in 1673. By an agreement of 1660 Thomas Whitney of Plymouth gave his house and land to his step son Joseph Faunce and his land in "Punkatesset" to his son Jeremiah Whitney who was then living in Sandwich where he had been made a Freeman in 1657. Thomas' will, made in 1664, mentions his son Jeremiah and his grandson Thomas Whiton (Plymouth Colony Probates, vol. 3, p. 7).[19]

Child of Henry and ----- (-----) Morecock:

i. Ann Morecock, bp. 5 or 15 Mar 1611, Biddenden, Kent.
ii. Elizabeth Morecock, bp. 6 Feb 1613, Biddenden, Kent; bur. 7 Apr 1617, Smarden, Kent.

Children of Henry and Audrey (Cock/Cook/Cork) Morecock:

iii. Katheren Morecock, bp. 14 Oct 1615, Smarden, Kent; bur. 15 Oct 1615, Smarden, Kent.
iv. Bennett1 Morecock, bp. 23 Aug 1618, Smarden, Kent; m. John Smith.
v. Nicholas1 Morecock, bp. 22 Apr 1621, Smarden, Kent; no further record.
vi. Mary1 Morecock, bp. 2 Sep 1623, Smarden, Kent; m. William Brown.

Child of Thomas1 and Audrey (Cock/Cook/Cork)(Morecock) Whitney:

i. Jeremiah2 Whitney, b. about 1627;[20] bp. 6 Aug 1626, Smarden, Kent; d. betw. 8 Nov and 29 Dec 1711, Tisbury, Martha's Vineyard, MA; m. Elizabeth Daggett.
ii. George Whitten, bp. 18 Jan 1628, Smarden, Kent; bur. 14 Feb 1628, Smarden, Kent.

Thomas1 and Winifred (Harding) Whitney had no children.

Thomas1 and Patience (Morton)(Faunce) Whitney had no children.


He might be the Thomas Whitton, son of Wacher Whitton, baptized 4 Nov 1600, Biddenden, Kent.


  • The Great Migration, Immigrants to New England, 1634-1635, Volume VII, T-Y, by Robert Charles Anderson. Boston: New England Historic Genealogical Society, 2011, pp. 380-386.
  • The Great Migration, Immigrants to New England, 1634-1635, Volume V, M-P, by Robert Charles Anderson. Boston: New England Historic Genealogical Society, 2011, pp. 146-149.

1.^  Leonard F. Tibbetts, Notes and Corrections: Whiton, Whitten, Whitney Notes," NEHGR, Volume 123 (1969), pp. 228-230.

2.^  Ibid.

3.^  Ibid.

4.^  Ibid.

5.^  Ibid.

6.^  Ibid.

7.^  Ibid.

8.^  "WHITNEY, Winnefred, wf. of Thomas, d. 23 Jul 1660," according to Lee D. van Antwerp, comp., and Ruth Wilder Sherman, ed., Vital Records of Plymouth, Massachusetts to the year 1850 (Camden, Maine: Picton Press, 1993).

9.^  Tibbetts, op. cit.

10.^  Ibid.

11.^  Ibid.

12.^  "'My deere Mother Whitteney deceased Agust the 16th 1691 Being Entered into the 77 yeare of her age', recorded by Elder Thomas Faunce," according to Plymouth Vital Records.

13.^  Tibbetts, op. cit.

14.^  John Camden Hotten, Original Lists of Persons of Quality ... (1874).

15.^  Eugene Aubrey Stratton, Plymouth Colony: Its History & People 1620-1691 (Salt Lake City, UT: Ancestry, Inc., 1986), p. 182.

16.^  Stratton, op. cit., p. 297.

17.^  Stratton, op. cit., p. 441.

18.^  Stratton, op. cit., p. 196.

19.^  Tibbetts, op. cit.

20.^  His age is estimated from his age of eight years on the ship list in 1635.

Copyright © 2006, 2013, Robert L. Ward and the Whitney Research Group.