An American Family History

Henry Batcheller

“Remember, remember always, that all of us, and you and I especially, are descended from immigrants and revolutionists."
― Franklin D. Roosevelt

Various Spellings of Batcheller:
Bachelder, Bacheldor, Bacheler, Bacheller, Bachelor, Bachelour, Bachildor, Bachiler, Bachilor, Batcheldor, Batcheldour, Batcheler, Batcheller, Batchellor, Batchellour, Batchelor, Batchclour, Batchiler and Batchilor.

Europeans who made the voyage to America faced a difficult journey of several months.
The town of Ipswich was established on August 5, 1634, from common land called Agawam. On October 18, 1648, that portion called the "Village" at the New Meadows was set off as Topsfield. The boundary line between Ipswich and Topsfield was established, February 28, 1694.

Henry Batcheller was born in England early in the 17th century. His brothers were Joseph Batcheller and John Batcheller. He was a brewer.

He came to America with his wife, Martha and four servants. They settled in Ipswich, Massachusetts. Martha and Henry did not have children. They came at the same time as his brother, Joseph,

They were Quakers.

In 1639, the town of Ipswich granted him 60 acres of upland and 20 acres of meadow near Hurttlebury Hill. He had to give up 50 acres, formerly granted to him in the West Meadows and stay in the town.

In 1641 he was on the list of commoners in Ipswich who signed an agreement about the number of cows for each bull on the Ipswich common land.

Like most men in Ipswich, he was a member of the local militia. In October, 1643 he was

of such as have forfeited, for not returning their Powder according to ann order of the Town.

In 1645 he sold Thomas Knowlton a six acre lot on the hill on the north side of the river.

Since they were Quakers, they were persecuted for their religion. There was no difference between church and state in Puritan Ipswich. Eventually the town of Ipswich took their land because they did not attend the usual public meetings. The land was placed in trust with Nathaniel Treadwell and John Warner.

In March, 1654, Henry was presented to the court and had to pay fees and costs. In May, 1660 he was fined for being absent from a public meeting. In September of that hear he was fined 5£ and court costs for his absense from worship.

On February 14, 1664, Henry was assigned share 13 in the division of Plum Island, Castle Neck and Hog (now Choote) Island.

Martha died on April 4, 1686.

Henry died on February 2, 1679. Nathaniel Treadwell, John Warner, and John Batchelder administrators of his estate.

His estate was distributed in 1697. His brother, Joseph's, children,
John, Elizabeth and Hannah, and his brother John's children each inherited 11£ 13s and a share of the remainder of his farm. Joseph's children sold their share.

Cattle were vital to a household and an important legacy.
Unweaned cattle are calves.
Female cattle are heifers and cows (had a calf).
Male cattle are steers (castrated) and bulls.
are trained draft animals and are often castrated adult male cattle.

Old Style Calendar
Before 1752 the year began on Lady Day, March 25th,. Dates between January 1st and March 24th were at the end of the year. Old Style (O.S.) and New Style (N.S.) are used to indicate whether the year has been adjusted. Often both dates are used.

A militia is a military unit composed of citizens who are called up in time of need.

The Society of Friends (Quakers) began in England in the 1650s, when they broke away from the Puritans. Pennsylvania was founded by William Penn, as a safe place for Friends to live and practice their faith.



Essex County, Massachusetts was created on May 10, 1643 by the General Court of the Massachusetts Bay Colony, when it ordered "that the whole plantation within this jurisdiction be divided into four sheires."
Estate inventories give us a glance into the home life of Colonial Americans.
Mister ( Mr.) was derived from master and Mrs. and Miss were derived from mistress. They indicated people of superior social status in colonial America.
The town common (commons) was a small, open field at the center of the town which was jointly owned. It was used as a marketplace, a place for the militia to drill, or for grazing livestock.

The rod or perch or pole is a surveyor's tool equal to 5 1⁄2 yards.

A moiety is one of two equal parts.

from Batchelder, Batcheller Genealogy, 1898 by Frederick Pierce

Henry Batcheller (brother of Joseph), b. in England; m. there Martha; d. April 4, 1686. in Ipswich. The town record reads, "Widdow Batcheldor dyed, 1686."

He settled in Ipswich in 1639. His farm was purchased May 14, 1696, by his nephew, Samuel Corning, of the admr. Nathaniel Treadwell and John Warner.

Henry Bachelor, a brewer, from Dover, Co. Kent, came over in 1636, with wife, Martha and four servants and settled at Ipswich. Died Feb. 2, 1679, and his wife died April 4, 1686. It is known that he did not leave any children. In his will he makes mention of the children of his brother John. His brother Joseph and family came over with him in 1636. He calls Joseph his youngest brother.

The following data relating to him is taken from the Ipswich town records: 1639.

Granted to Mr. Batcheler sixty acres of upland and twenty of meadow near Hurttlebury hill joining upon the land betwixt Ipswich and Rowley upon his relinquishing of 50 acres, formerly granted to him in the West Meadows and upon his staying in the town years, to be laid out by John Perkins, Senr. [1583], Jo: Tuttle and John Gage.

1639, 7th 1 2th. Granted at a general meeting to Edward Browne thirty acres of upland, adjoining to Rowley line and the southeast end of Mr. Bachelour's farm, to be laid out bv Mr. Tuttle, Mr. Wilson and the lot-layers.

In an agreement about the number of cows for each bull [upon the commons] "Bacheler" is with 42 other names. 1641. Henry Bachellor is on the list "of such as are comoners."

October, 1643. Henry Bacheller was "of such as have forfeited, for not returning their Powder according to ann order of the Town

1647. Edward Browne is allowed to exchange his land "near Henry Batcheldours" to join Joseph Metcalf .

14 Feb., 1664. "Henry Bachelor" had share No. 13 in the division of Plum-Island, Castle-Neck, and Hog [now Choote, Rufus Choate b. there] Island. On "a list of those that have right of commonage according to law and order in this town," "Henry Bachelors farme" is found.

It appears by the General Court records and the County Court records that he was of the Society of Friends, aud that he and his wife were often arraigned because they did not attend the usual public meetings. March, 1654.

Henry Batcheller, upon his presentment, is discharged and his wife had a legal admonition and is discharged, paying their fees and charges of the witnesses.

September, 1660. Henry Batcheller for his absence from the publique meetings on the Lord's Day is fined for 20 days, £5 and fees of court.

See also May, 1660. Subsequently the town of Ipswich were empowered to take their lands from them and place in trust, because they did not attend the publique worship. The property was placed in the hands of Nathaniel Treadwell and John Warner. These two persons, with his brother Joseph's son John, settled the estate. His inventory is dated Feb. 6, 1678.

July, 1679, a list of debts due the estate of Henry Batchelder, of Salem, was presented to the Probate Court. In the list was John Batchelder £42 2 3. The document mentions his brother John. The inventory of his estate was returned to the Essex Co. Probate Court Sept. 30, 1679. See Vol. 305, p. 173. Essex Co. Probate Records. Old Series, Book 5. July, 1694, to November, 1697. Vol. 305. p. 209.

Colonel Gedney Esqr. & Judge of probate of Wills for the County of Essex Cur. Honored Sn. according to the commission that wee received From your Self of making a division of the Farme of Henry Bachilder which Commission beareth date May -25th 1696 Cu. Cu

Accordingly we went upon the place & Firstly laid out So much Land as we accounted worth Forty Shillings to the administrator and then viewed the Rest of the land that thereby we might make the quantity according to the quality & So made a division of the Rest of the land not Sold by the administrator.

Between the children of Joseph Bachilder & John Bachilder & then made a division of that part which is for the children of John Bachilder & bounded them parts by Stakes and trees: which parts & divisions Run Cross the farme & are equally For quantity being thirteen rod & twelve Foot on the north west Side of the Farm & Eight rods & ten Foot on the Southeast Side & the half moiety or right of Comonage we do appoint to the children of John Bachilder John Bachilder

& as to that part which we laid out for the Children of Joseph Bachilder we made no division it being Sold by those children to Joseph Knolton

& this division was made the Eleventh day of August 1696

& to this we Sett to our hands & Seals this First day of October 1696.
Simon Stacey & a Seal.
Nathl. Knoulton & a Seal.
John Warner & a Seal.

Which Returned is allowed Cur. Examd. &. I. C. Regr. Henry's farm covered 300 or 500 acres. The ground is from Bullbrook to "the old gate." I do not know the width, except near the west end — "the old gate." The old cellar where his house stood is hardly more than a hole like a cup grassed over with an apple tree of considerable size in it. The old cellar is 3 miles out from Ipswich Center and the spot is well overgrown with small wood.

He d. in Ipswich, Feb. 2, 1678-9, s. p.; res. Ipswich, Mass.

To be presented to the court meant to be charged or indited.
American colonists continued to use British monetary units, namely the pound, shilling and pence for which £1 (or li) equalled 20s and 1s equalled 12d. In 1792 the dollar was established as the basic unit of currency.

Historically an esquire (Esq. or Esqr.) was the title of a man who ranked below a knight in the English gentry. Later it designated a commoner with the status of gentleman and was used by attorneys.

Seals were used to authenticate documents and men were expected to have a personal die. Records in deed books are copies and signatures are usually in the clerk’s handwriting. The clerk drew a circle around the word “seal” to indicate that the original document was sealed.

Rowley, Essex County, Massachusetts was first settled in 1639.

Colonial Maryland
Colonial New England
Colonial Virginia & West Virginia
Quakers & Mennonites
New Jersey Baptists
German Lutherans
Watauga Settlement
Pennsylvania Pioneers
Midwest Pioneers
Jewish Immigrants

©Roberta Tuller 2023
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