Major Thomas Leonard

Male 1641 - 1713  (72 years)


Personal Information    |    PDF

  • Name Thomas Leonard 
    Title Major 
    Born 03 Aug 1641  Kinver, Staffordshire, England Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Christened 08 Aug 1641  Kinver, Staffordshire, England Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Gender Male 
    Died 24 Nov 1713  Raynham, Bristol Co., Massachusetts, USA Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Notes 
    • Deacon, Major Thomas LEONARD2,4,5,6 was born on 3 Aug 1641 in Kinver, Staffordshire, England. He was baptized on 8 Aug 1641 in Kinver, Staffordshire, England. He died on 24 Nov 1713 in Raynham, Bristol Co., MA.2 He was buried in Neck of Land Burying Ground, Taunton, MA. Thomas was baptised August 8, 1641, in Kinver, Staffordshire, son ofJames and Jane Leonard. Kinver is located on the Stour River, 7 miles SWof Dudley. Immediately across the river is located Whittinton. Is thiswhy James Leonard in 1666 named his "forge or blomerie with one hearth"on the Mill River in Taunton, MA, "Whittinton Iron Works?" See"Pre-American Ancestry of our Leonard Ironworkers(http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.com/~bart/Leonard2.htm).

      One of the shareholders in John Winthrop's "Company of Undertakers of theIron Works in New England" was Thomas Foley (1617 - 1677). He and hisbrothers were probably the formost ironmasters in the Black Country (ironore country in Staffordshire) at that time, owning iron and mine works asfar afield as Monmouthshire. Their father, Richard Foley, started thefamily fortune with an iron works near Stourbridge, 3 miles east ofKinver. Could he have been involved in recruiting the Leonards whenWinthrop was having a difficult time conscripting experienced ironworkers?

      Thomas is buried in same lot with son Joseph and grandson Joseph. D.Hamilton Hurd in "History of Bristol County, MA," gives his date of deathas December 21, 1713.

      He was foreman and manager of the Taunton ironworks from 1683 to 1713,according to Fanny Leonard Koster.

      About Thomas Leonard, from Elisha Clark Leonard/George Marston Leonardmanuscript:

      "It is evident from the habits displayed in the various offices he heldand the conditions under which he had to perform the duties connectedwith the same that he was a man of rare judgment, of great ability, andof untiring industry. He was careful and conscientious in all hisactions whenever he was called upon to perform some duty. He was quick,versatile, and popular, and he seems to have become the leading man inthe community and acquired the confidence of the leading men in theMassachusetts Colony. The amount of work that he accomplished wasremarkable and the skill and correctness displayed in the various papersthat he drew up and are still extant would lead one to believe that hehad received a careful legal training. Yet we know that it was theresult of his own special efforts at self education, since he was unableto write his name when he first arrived. His family was moving aboutfrom England to various parts of America. His mother, burdened with thecares of a growing family under pioneer conditions, died when Thomas was21. We must believe that it was his mother, through her oversight andencouragement, laid the foundation of the character displayed by hereldest son.

      "Under the instruction of his father, he leared the iron manufacturetrade and became an expert "bloomer" and refiner. It is almost certainthat as early as 1666 he had become skilled sufficiently that his fatherleft the oversight and management of the manufacture of iron at theTaunton works to him, leaving James free to devote his time to theWhittinton works. In 1696 he and his brother James obtained a grant of200 acres of land in the North Purchase for encouragement to build aforge on the Cowesitt River. He and James continued to own and operatethis forge until 1707, when James sold his share to his nephew George,son of Thomas. In 1700 Thomas, together with Philip King, commenced tobuild a forge at Trout Brook in Middleboro. The next year, Thomaspurchased King's portion, finished the forge, and placed his youngest sonElkanah to manage it and the sawmill that he erected at the same time.Thomas gave this forge and lands to (his son) Elkanah in his will."

      "He was appointed by the Court at Plymouth an ensign of the militiacompany at Taunton in 1665. No doubt that he immediately set himself towork to become efficient as a military officer. In 1884, a book entitled"The discipline of the young artilleryman" was found with ThomasLeonard's autograph and given in his will to his son, Samuel. In 1690,he became Captain of the East Taunton militia.

      "In 1668 Thomas Leonard was one of the purchasers of the North Purchase,later set aside as the town of Norton. In 1669 he was on a committee tomake a list of the free inhabitants of the town. In 1882 he was electedone of the Selectmen of Taunton and a Deputy to the Court at Plymouth.These offices he continued to hold with but a single exception until1691. After the union of Plymouth and Massachusetts Bay Colonies, he waschosen a Representative to the General Court at Boston in 1694/5 andagain in 1698/9. On May 6, 1675, his father conveyed to him the EastHearth at the Taunton Works as Masterworkman. In 1683 he was appointedClerk of the Ironworks, which position he held until his death in 1713.Taunton purchased and possesses the account books that he maintained,giving a clear indication of his methodical habits. From the time ThomasLeonard became Clerk and manager until his death, the Taunton Ironworkspaid 15% per year on its shares.

      "In 1684 he was appointed to solemnize marriages in Taunton. In 1685 hewas appointed an Associate Justice for the County of Bristol, whichoffice he continued to hold until his death in 1713. He also apparentlystudied medecine, due to the remoteness of help to Taunton. He also hada large farm. Will dtd. January 29, 1711/12 probated February 5, 1713/4."

      Another source: Squaw Betty, niece of King Philip treated both familiesof the Leonards when they were stricken with typhoid fever. She gatheredherbs, prepared and administered the medecine, and nursed them back tohealth. In return, they offered her wampum but she declined the same.However, she did accept as a present a pretty red cloak and in it shesaid she hoped to be buried.

      The Eddy Family in America, 1930: John Eddy was in Capt. Thos. Leonard'sFirst Military Company of Taunton. There may be more in Emery, Historyof Taunton, p. 354.

      Will of Thomas Leonard "the eldest of ye name in Taunton" being in his71st year of age, dtd. 29 Jan. 1711/2, prob. 5 February 1713/4. Mentionswife, wife's father, five sons, two daughters, grandson Thomas of sonJohn, brothers Benjamin and James. Lands in Middleboro, Taunton,Rehobeth, and Taunton North Purchase. Friends Elder Henry Hodges, DeaconEzra Deane, Deacon Israel Thrasher, and Seth Wiliams to be overseers.(3:179-185).

      Children checked against the list in NEHGS Reg. 1851, p. 414(3),"Genealogical Memoir of the Leonard Family."
    Person ID I1128  OurNorthernRoots | Andrew Burdett Ancestry
    Last Modified 30 Oct 2011 

    Father James Leonard,   b. Abt 1620, Pontypool, Mommoth Co., Wales Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 01 Sep 1691, Taunton, Bristol Co., Massachusetts, USA Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age ~ 71 years) 
    Mother Mary Jane Martin,   b. Bef 1625, England Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 25 Feb 1664, Taunton, Bristol Co., Massachusetts, USA Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age ~ 39 years) 
    Family ID F5076  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family Mary Watson,   b. 1642, Plymouth, Plymouth Co., Massachusetts, USA Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 1723, Plymouth, Plymouth Co., Massachusetts, USA Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age ~ 81 years) 
    Children 
    +1. Mary Leonard,   b. 02 Aug 1663, Plymouth, Plymouth Co., Massachusetts, USA Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 01 Nov 1727, Bridgewater, Plymouth Co., Massachusetts, USA Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 64 years)
    Family ID F9556  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

  • Event Map
    Link to Google MapsBorn - 03 Aug 1641 - Kinver, Staffordshire, England Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsChristened - 08 Aug 1641 - Kinver, Staffordshire, England Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsDied - 24 Nov 1713 - Raynham, Bristol Co., Massachusetts, USA Link to Google Earth
     = Link to Google Earth 
    Pin Legend  : Address       : Location       : City/Town       : County/Shire       : State/Province       : Country       : Not Set