1. James LEONARD1
was born about 1620 in Pontypool, England/Wales. He died on 1 Sep
1691 in Taunton, Bristol Co., MA.2
There is uncertainty as to when and how James Leonard first came toAmerica.
The Land Patent Books of Virginia, Book 1, page 23, shows Robert Bennettgranted
700 acres...for transportation of 14 persons, including JamesLeonard, June 26,
1635. One theory is that James came first to Virginia,then to Maryland, then
to Providence, then to Lynn. Source: The LeonardDictionary, Volume III (manuscript).
Duplicate record August 18, 1637.Another source is Charles Edward Banks' "Topographical
Dictionary of 2885English Emigrants to New England 1620-1650," Baltimore,
GenealogicalPublishing Co., 1963, 3rd edition, p. 148, citing Various References:NEGR
5/104. Apparently, employees and recruits of John Winthrop weresometimes not
listed as passengers, since they were not paying passengerson those particular
vessels crossing the Atlantic.
He arrived before 1650 from Pontypool, Wales, although some sources sayhe first
came to Providence, RI, in 1645. He was paid for bringing hisgoods from Providence
by the Lynn/Saugus Ironworks in 1651. On January10, 1645/6 in Providence, 25
acres of land were granted to a number ofinhabitants, including James Leonard,
but his name had been crossed out.He was the Ironmaster of Taunton, having first
participated developmentof the iron works at Braintree and Saugus.
But there appear to have been Leonards in the Pontypool area since theearly 1600's.
A Thomas Leonard mentioned in deed of July 29, 1633,bordering lands of John
Powell, John Gerbon, and Phillip Morgan inTrevethin (Parish near Pontypool, with
a bridge near swamp and pool therein 1490 -- pool later became forge pond).
An ironworks was in operationbefore 1634, and there's a record of a complaint
against John Wylde forfailure to collect monies from it, instead selling iron
at a discount tohis friends. Thomas Morgan was recorded as selling charcoal
to it in1640. The works were apparently owned by the Hanburys, probably Richardb.
August 1618. Thomas, son of Jacob Leonard, was baptized January 9,1699; William,
son of Jacob Leonard, was baptized July 23, 1696;Gwenllian, wife of Thomas Leonard,
buried March 15, 1656; Mary Leonardmarried Alexander Lewis January 26, 1656;
a son of Philip Leonard wasborn October 27, 1656. Sarah, daughter of James Leonard,
baptizedSeptember 1, 1705; Ann, daughter of James Leonard, baptized March 13,1702.
Local records include a mention of a Thomas Leonard in 1790, aJohn and Mary
Leonard who died at age 84 in 1774. These indicate therewere Leonards and ironmaking
in the Pontypool area after James and Thomasleft. These Leonards had names identical
to or similar to those whoemigrated to America. There was even a Theophilus
Leonard, iron refiner,who died March 31, 1900 in nearby Pontnewydd, Wales, perhaps
just acoincidence. (Source: old documents at the Monmouthshire County recordsoffice
near Pontypool, October 2003. A researcher with more time couldprobably find
some interesting material here.) Elisha Clark Leonard paid5 pounds to a clergyman
in Pontypool to check the records for James andHenry, but he reportedly found
nothing. GML reported that laterresearchers found nothing about them either.
So the theory is that Jamesand Henry were not in Pontypool very long.
Probably James and his young family (and his older brother Henry) werealso ironworkers
in the Bilston, Staffordshire (Cheshire?), area prior totheir immigration. Bilston
became a center of the "Black Country" ironindustry. George Marston
Leonard includes a note on one of his tablesthat "James, son of Thomas,
son of Henry of Billston, Staffordshire..."from McKenzie, Colonial Families,
Vol. IV. Apparently, the Leonards lefta claim to the ownership of some heavily
mortgaged ironworks there,moving on as the mining districts became less productive.
Years later(1821?) an ironworker in Bilston by the name of James Leonard sent
aletter to James Leonard, ironworker in or near Taunton, MA stating thatthe extensive
iron works there in Bilston belonged to the Leonards. TheLeonards in Taunton
decided not to undertake the expense of an extendedsuit to regain the works.
The Leonards may also have been involved insome of the ironworks in Somersetshire,
England, and Pontypool,Monmouthshire, Wales, as well.
James Leonard was but a short time at the Saugus Ironworks and atBraintree for
a longer time. At sale of the Braintree works, he became apartner. With the
invitation from Taunton, he moved there, erected aforge and furnace, and continued
as masterworkman, a position he held forthe rest of his life. ECL believes Oliver
Purchase was the one whoinduced Henry and James along with Ralph Russell to come
to Taunton. Heconveyed the two hearths at Taunton to his sons, Thomas and James,
andthey in turn conveyed them to their sons. He purchased a lot on MillRiver
and erected a one-hearth forge, which he called Whittinton Forge.His son Joseph
was the masterworkman at Whittinton Forge. His two othersons, Benjamin and Uriah,
were also trained as "bloomers." About 1682James Leonard built a house
for himself a short distance from the Taunton(Raynham) Ironworks on the north
side of the road. It was a gambled roofhouse two stories in front and running
back to one story in the rear.When he died in 1691, he left an estate valued
at 500 pounds, a veryrespectable sum in those days (from Elisha Clark Leonard
and GeorgeMarston Leonard's unpublished manuscript).
More about the involvement of James and Henry Leonard in early ironworksin Massachusetts
and New Jersey can be found in Bill Barton's articles,"The Establishment
of the Iron Industry in America," "Pre-AmericanAncestry of Our Leonard
Ironworkers," and "Leonard Siblings Henry, James,Philip, Sarah, and
Thomas in America and Some of Their Descendants,"<freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.com/~bart/LEONARD1.htm>,
James Leonard was allowed to keep an "ordinary" (bar) in Taunton.
Thelicense was revoked in 1664/5, but later conveyed to his son, Thomas.
James Leonard frequently entertained Massasoit and King Philip, whojourneyed
from Mt. Hope to the hunting grounds at Fowling Pond. FowlingPond is in Raynham,
was one mile north of the Ancient Iron Works onpresent-day King Philip's Street
near the end of Mill Street. FowlingPond was said to be two miles long and three-quarters
of a mile wide inKing Philip's time, but today has disappeared. James repaired
their gunsand conferred favors that led to a lasting friendship. King Philipconveyed
to James Leonard about two hundred and fifty acres atMattapoisett Neck in Swansea
in October 1665, but the deed was lost bythe Plymouth Court. Tradition says
that out the outbreak of KIngPhilip's War in 1675, Philip gave strict orders
that his men were neverto harm a Leonard (although young Uriah Leonard was almost
shot by KingPhilip's men early in the war, a bullet having passed through his
hat ashe rode his horse to escape an attack). It is conjectured that becauseof
the Leonards Taunton was not attacked during the war. (Philip'sorders were
actually not to disturb certain families including those ofJames Leonard, John
Brown, and Capt. Thomas Willett, all of Taunton --Hurd, p. 346).
One peculiarity to check out: although several Leonards were officers inthe
militia of the time, there's little mention of Leonards fighting inPhilip's War.
Bodge in Soldiers of King Philip's War mentions Jacob asserving under Capt.
Woodworth, Thomas credited under Capt. Thomas BrattleOctober 19, 1675, and Thomas
at Lynn, August 24, 1676. More researchneeds to be done on the activities of
the Leonards during Philip's War.
One of the garrison houses used during King Philip's War was the SamuelLeonard
house erected in 1653 by James Leonard at the site of Taunton'sAncient Iron Works
Company now in Raynham. A memorial plaque marking thespot is located seven-tenths
of a mile east from Route 44 along the southside of Route 104.
Another traditional story is that Philip's head was deposited in thebasement
of Leonard's house for safekeeping before being sent toPlymouth. However, none
of the early historians indicated anything butthat the head was sent directly
to Plymouth for display. (Philip wasshot by Alderman, a Sakonnet Indian, on
August 12, 1676, in a swamp atthe foot of Mt. Hope in Bristol. His head was
set on a pole in Plymouthand stayed there for a generation. For more on King
Philip's War, seeEric B. Schultz and Michael J. Tougias, "King Philip's
War: The Historyand Legacy of America's Forgotten Conflict (Woodstock, VT:
TheCountryman Press, 1999)."
ECL notes that James had 68 grandchildren. A chart gives those presentat a Thanksgiving
family party in 1690, and I've checked all thegrandchildren alive then against
the chart (there were 45 living in 1690).
Account of Estate of James Leonard of Taunton dtd. August 24, 1697.Agreement
about estate among Isaac and Hannah Dean, Joseph Leonard, UriahLeonard, Thomas
Leonard, Benjamin Leonard, James Leonard, John andAbigail Kingsley, and Isaac
and Rebecca Chapman. (1:44).
William Reed Deane in "Genealogical Memoir of the Leonard Family" listsall
of the children but John (NEHGS Reg. 1851:414(3).
James LEONARD and Mary Jane
MARTIN were married in 1640 in England.2
Mary Jane MARTIN2
(daughter of Isaac MARTIN) was born before 1625. She died on 25 Feb
1663/64 in Taunton, Bristol Co., MA. She was also referred to as
Margaret and Jennie Martin. A family ofMartyns lived in Newport, not far from
Pontypool. Henry Martyn, yeoman,1573, John, William, Thomas, Morgan, Mary, Edmund,
Catherine, 1583.William was keeper of the keys in Newport. Further research
at Newportand the Monmouthshire County Records Office might turn up a relationship,although
church records in that area do not go back to this era.
According to ECL, Susanna Leonard (Nathaniel6, Elkanah5, Elkanah4,Elkanah3, Thomas2,
James1) states that 1st wife of James was JennieMartin, no source given. ECL
also notes, "see VA land records of aMartyn family." James LEONARD
and Mary Jane MARTIN had the following children:
James LEONARD and Margaret FORD were married
before 1662 in Taunton, Bristol, MA.3
Margaret FORD (daughter of William FORD and ANNA)
was born about 1632. She died before 9 Apr 1701 in Taunton, Bristol
Co., MA. Was her last name Ford? Will of Margaret Leonard of Taunton,
widow,about the 68th year of her age, dtd. November 12, 1700, prob. April 9,1701.
Mentions son-in-law Uriah Leonard's wife Elizabeth and his daughterMargaret.
Daughter-in-law Hannah Deane and her daughter Abigail Terry,son-in-law James
Leonard's daughters Abigail and Prudence Lewis.Son-in-law Thomas Leonard's daughters
Elizabeth and Johanah. CousinEleazer Carver to be exec. (She was probably step-mother,
notmother-in-law). (2:30). Problem: Thomas Leonard didn't have adaughter