©Barlow Genealogy 1998-2004

George Barlow of Exeter New Hampshire

          From the research of Edson Barlow

George Barlow was born, say, around 1620 and probably in England. The first record of himin New England was on September 19, 1637,whenhe was before a Quarter Court of the Massachusetts Bay Colony held at Boston and, "for his idleness, was censured to be whipped" [15, 16]. There is no firm record of either his arrival in New England or of the date and place of his birth.

There has been a great deal of misinformation and confusion concerning the various George Barlows of colonial New England and the lack of good records has contributed much to this confusion. A number of genealogists have claimed that George of Exeter and George of Sandwich are the same person, and at least one has included George of Milford in the mix.  Much of the confusion stems from the fact that, with one significant exception, the available records for George of Exeter end before the available records for George of Sandwich begin. The exception is that Noyes, Libby and Davis emphatically state that George Barlow of Exeter died in what is now Maine and left his farm to his widow. This occurred after the other George Barlow appeared on the scene at Sandwich, Massachusetts [17].

During the winter of 1636-7, the Rev. John Wheelwright (c.1593-1677) had been banished from the Massachusetts Bay Colony for his sympathy in the"Antinomian controversy" with the religiousviewsof his sister-in-law, Anne (Marbury) Hutchinson, who was banished from Massachusetts and excommunicated. With William Coddington and others, Anne Hutchinson went first to Aquidneck Island (now Rhode Island) in 1638. Later, around 1642, she went to Westchester County, New York (then New Netherlands), where she was killed by Indians in a raid on her settlement on the banks of the Hutchinson River.

John Wheelwright and his followers made their way north, bought land from an Indian chief, Wehanownowit, and founded the town of Exeter on the Squamscott River southwest of Portsmouth [27]. Although Exeter is now in New Hampshire, it was then new territory supposedly beyond the jurisdiction of the Massachusetts Bay Colony. George Barlow was one of the followers of Wheelwright and one of the thirty-five men who signed the "Combination" that formed the government of Exeter. This "Combination"was first signed on "Mon., 5th d., 4th, 1639" [June 5, 1639] and was subsequently re-signed on October 4, 1639 [19]. George Barlow apparently was illiterate because he signed with his mark, a "B".

Of the signers of the 1639 "Combination", George Barlow and ten others did not receive land at Exeter in the first distribution that was ordered in that year. In an analysis of this distribution, John Wentworth has determined that land was granted only to married men and then in proportion to family size [20]. Based on this analysis, George Barlowapparentlymarried in 1647 because at the November 4th Town Meeting in that year he received a grant of forty acres"of upland in the south sied of the fresh River (Layd out according to grant bounded with Hamptonlyne joyning to John folsom Senier 60)." In 1650 he received an additional four acres which seems to indicate the birth of a child. His wife's name was Cicely but no further particulars of her or of this marriage are known. There is no known record of any children other than the grant of four acres, but an Elizabeth Barlow married Henry Hatherly on July 4, 1671, at Saco, a time and place that would be correct for a daughter of George Barlow born in 1650. Mr. Hatherly was a resident of Wells from 1641 to 1677.

George Barlow took the Freeman's Oath at Exeter in 1648. On April 22, 1649, the Town of Exeter granted George Barlow and others the right to set up a sawmill "at Lamperell [Lamprey] River, att the falls a little above the Wigwams." These rights were renewed in 1652.   In 1649 his wife "Sysley" was fined for not appearing as a witness.

In 1642 the inhabitants of Exeter petitioned to become part of Massachusetts and were readily admitted [21]. The Rev. Wheelwright, who was still under the sentence of banishment,  moved further north and settled at Wells in what is now Maine. George Barlow followed several years later, in 1652, but he and fifteen others finally signed their submission to the government of Massachusetts at a Court held at Wells on July 5, 1653 [21, 22].

George Barlow sold a house at Exeter to Nicholas Lisson on 20 [3] 1649 [May 20, 1649] and he sold houses and land at Exeter to John Bursley on March 25, 1648 [24].

George Barlow is said to have been a preacher at Exeter. He preached at Saco in 1653 but apparently his style was disliked.  At the same Court a tWells on July 5, 1653, when he submitted to Massachusetts "several inhabitants complaining that George Barlow is a disturbance to the place, the commission thought meete to forbid the said George Barlow any more publickly to preach or prophesie under the penalty of œ10 for every offence." [21, 22].

George Barlow does not appear in the records after 1653. He apparently died at Scarborough sometime between 1653 and 1665. His widow Cicely subsequently married Henry Watts and the fact that she was Henry Watts' wife was noted in a court proceeding on November 7, 1665. Henry and Cicely are said to have improved George Barlow's 230 acre Dunstan farm which they sold on May 20, 1670, to Robert Nicholson [17]. Henry Watts was baptized in England on June 28, 1602, and came to New England in 1631 with Edward Hilton, a fellow fishmonger [26]. He died around 1697 and Cicely is believed to have preceded him as she is not mentioned in the administration of his estate on June 27, 1697 [17].

George Barlow married Cicely ---- around 1647 at Exeter, as previously noted.

Their child was:


Elizabeth Barlow was probably born in 1650 at Exeter.

She married Henry Hatherly on July 4, 1671, at Saco [25]

Key to sources used by Edson Barlow