Dyer of Lincolnshire, England, and Newport, Rhode Island
William Dyer [a] b bef 19 Sep 1609, Kirkby Lathrope, Lincolnshire, England, d 18 Apr 1672, Newport, Newport, RI. He md Mary Barrett [b] 22 Oct 1633, St. Martin-in-the-Fields, London, England. She was b 1615, England, d 1 Jun 1660, Boston Common, Boston, Suffolk, MA.
Children of William Dyer and Mary Barrett were:
Child of Samuel Dyer and Anne Hutchinson was:
a. Son of an affluent Lincolnshire yeoman, William Dyer (or Dyre as he spelled his name) was a milliner by occupation, and also a member of the great Livery Company of The Fishmongers, and a citizen of London. He and wife Mary Barrett were a young couple when they came from England to Boston, late in 1634 or early 1635. As a supporter of Rev. Wheelwright, he was disarmed, and disenfranchised from the church in Boston for "seditious writing", and thus removed to Rhode Island sometime after 1637. He was among the original 12 signers of the charter "The Incorporation of Providence Plantations in the Narragansett Bay in New England", dated 7 Mar 1638, and one of the 18 original proprietors of Rhode Island in 1639. He served in various public offices, including secretary of Providence Plantations in 1639, comissioner at Newport to act against the Dutch, and to the Assembly from Providence in 1655, from Warwick in 1661, and from Newport in 1662.
b. Much has been written of Mary Barrett, some claiming her to have been an illegitimate daughter of Lady Arabella Stuart, which is, of course, utter nonsense. While her origins have yet to be discovered, her life and fate are well known. After she and her husband removed to Rhode Island, she later reappeared in Boston, preaching her Quaker faith. Boston was extremely hostile to those of the Quaker faith, and she was ordered, upon penalty of imprisonment, to leave. She did so, but returned again, this time being imprisoned until her son was able to guarantee her removal from Boston, and that she not return under penalty of death. But she did return, once again, to Boston, was imprisoned, and sentenced to be hung. On the first day of June, 1660, Mary Barrett became the first, and only female in America to suffer death by hanging due to her religious beliefs. While she might be painted as a religious fanatic, it was certainly apparent by these events, that the religious intolerance from which so many Englishmen had fled, still existed in their new home. To read a thorough account of Mary Barrett, as well as an amazing account of the persecution of Quakers, see Mary Barrett Dyer.
GL: English Origins of New England Families, The True Story of Mary Dyer, by G. Andrews Moriarty, pp 733-735, from an article originally appearing in NEHGR and republished by Genealogical Publishing Company.
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