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Henry Prentice Family Biographies

  1. Henry Prentice
  2. Henry Prentice
  3. Nathaniel Prentice

The information on this page is based on the following sources:
Note: Comments by the editor (me) are indicated by "[* comment here]".


     HENRY PRENTICE, "planter," of Cambridge, Mass., was there before 1640, and probably born in England. He was a member of the First Church, Cambridge, Mass., formed in 1636, whose members were taken and registered 11 mo., 1658, by Rev. Johnathan Mitchell of that church. [c] He owned lands in Sudbury, Mass., as one of the original proprietors in the second and third divisions of land there In 1650. He died per Cambridge town records, June 9, 1654. "Inventory of the estate of Henry Prentice, Sen., of Cambridge, 1663: House and 5 acres land and orchard, £27; 3 acres in Westfield, £7, 10; 3 acres meadow at Ale --- --- (?), £3; two do. on South-side of river, £2; 1 bed, table, and chayre, 6/; bed bolster and 3 blankets, £2, 6, 0; 1 pr. sheets, 12/;. 1 new sheet, 3/; 1 coarse do., 4/6d; napkins, 3/4d=£l, 2. 4; 2 iron pots, 8/; 1 kettle, 1 chair, beetle and wedges and handsaw, 4/; a little table and bowl, and little barrel, 2/; 1 pail, 1 stool, 1 pr tongs pan, 1 warming pan, 1 hoe. 3/4d; 2 cows,. £9; 1 pewter dish, 1 porringer, 1 smoothing iron, 2/; 1 town rate in Sudbury, £l.-- Prized by Gilbert, his X mark, Crackbone, and Gregory Stone, Oct. 16, 1663." His relict widow, Joan, and John Gibson, "her now husband," administrators. The Court ordered distribution, to the widow, £20; rest to the children, except to oldest son, double. In 1648 he and wife deed these lands (Sudbury) to John Goodnow. Henry Prentice was freeman, Cambridge, May 22, 1653. His first wife was Elizabeth ---, who d. May 13, 1653 [* 1643 according to Savage, which makes much more sense], O. S. He m., 2d, Joane --- (per Savage). Henry Prentice d. June 9, 1654, O. S. "Joan, widow of Henry Prentice, and their children, Mary, Solomon, Abiah, Samuel, Sarah, and Henry, were all born and baptized in this [First] church, Cambridge." "Joan, widow of Henry Prentice, deceased, was a member in full communion there, as was her husband, Henry P." Joan, widow of Henry Prentice, m., 2d, John Gibson, Sen., July 24 1662 (his second wife), when he was sixty-five years old.

    "Dec. 3, 1713, Samuel and Henry Prentice, Nathaniel Hancock, John and Sarah Woodward, children of Henry Prentice, some time of Cambridge, deceased, quitclaim to Solomon Prentice, having received our part of him."


[c] Jonathan Mitchell's list of church members of the Shepard First Church, Cambridge (taken 11th month, 1668), in Newell's sermon, was found by Rev. Dr. Holmes amomg the Prince manuscripts in the Old South Church, Boston. It had double columns of names. The new stone church near the Washington Elm in Cambridge, Rev. Dr. McKenzie, pastor, is the Shepard Church. The Unitarian Church, Cambridge, Rev. Mr. Hall, pastor, is named the First Church.


     HENRY2 PRENTICE, son of Henry1 and Joan; m. April 2, 1682, Mary, dau. of John Gove, who wills Aug. 28, 1704, to the dau. of Henry and Mary Prentice. About 1675, he and John Watson, of Roxbury, spent two weeks with the Natick Indians by direction of the council, to test their religion and faithfulness to the English. They reported favorably on both points. Henry became a freeman in 1684[* Savage]


     REV. NATHANIEL3 PRENTICE, Harvard College 1715, son of Henry2 and Mary, m., 1724, Mary, dau. of Judge William Tyng, of Nashua. He was ordained, 1718, in Dunstable, Mass., as successor of Rev. Mr. Wells. The History of Dunstable says that he begin to preach there in June, 1720, and that the town gave him a call Aug. 20 of that year, offering £100 on settlement, and a salary of £80 a year. He accepted, and the town voted, Nov. 13, 1720, that when Mr. Prentice comes to keep house and have a family, and stand in need of a larger supply, then to add reasonable additions to his salary if our abilities will afford it. Dec. 8 of the same year the town again voted that Mr. Prentice after marriage shall have a sufficient supply of wood, or £10 of passable money in lieu thereof, yearly. "He was a man of wit and a good sermonizer"; his wife was a smart, courageous woman and a good shot. At a shooting match she took the gun from her husband's hands and won the prize, a fowling-piece, which has been handed down in the family, and was in posession of William H. Prentice, Esq., of Boston.[d] Rev. Nathaniel Prentice d. in Dunstable, Feb. 27, 1737, ae. 40. His will of Dec. 5 1736, proved March 24, 1738, by his widow, the executrix, gives his dau. Mary, sons William, Henry, and Nathaniel, dau. Lucy, and son John £20 each, when of lawful age to be married, at the rate of 27s. per ounce of silver; all the rest of his property, real and personal, to his wife, Mary, "as I had of her 6 or £700 which she let go to pay my debts, and the rest spent in the family to keep us alive, and I think I am in conscience bound to give her an equivalent." Inventory 1738, house, etc., 25 acres, £500; other £140, including "negro woman," £80; then follows "other cattle," as cow, heifer, sheep, etc. Total, £890.
[d] Who has it in 1882? Wm. H. Prentice's children are deceased.
[e] Dwight Family.
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