George Burdett

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George Burdett (c. 1602-1671) was the second colonial governor of the Upper Plantation of New Hampshire, later to become the Province of New Hampshire, between 1637 and 1640. Born in England, Burdett was a minister of the Church of England serving at Yarmouth. Under the pretence of being oppressed by a fellow bishop, but in reality because he had been suspended for disrespecting a statue of Jesus, he left his life and children and travelled to New England in 1636.[1] Burdett spent a short time in Salem, Massachusetts before travelling to Dover, New Hampshire where his popularity led to his election as governor within a year. His ministry was characterised by the dispute between Episcopalian and Puritan settlers,[2] resulting in "confusion and trouble."[3]

Burdett corresponded with Archbishop William Laud, and when this was discovered by his political opponents, he was forced from office. Following an adulterous revelation, he left for Agamenticus (present-day York, Maine), however he fell into "usurpation, crime and injustice".[4] According to State Papers from Maine, he was "indicted by the whole Bench for a man of ill name and fame." He was charged with committing adultery with two married women and ordered to pay compensation.[3] As a result, he returned to England, where he served as chaplain to Parliamentary regiments during the English Civil War. After the Restoration he served as a minister in Ireland.

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ The Congregational Quarterly. Vol. VIII. 1866. 
  2. ^ Breen, p. 246.
  3. ^ a b Provincial and state papers, Volume 1. New Hampshire. pp. 119–121. 
  4. ^ Lawrence, p. 318.

References[edit]

  • Breen, Louise A. (2001). Transgressing the bounds. Oxford University Press US. ISBN 0-19-513800-7. 
  • Daniell, Jere R. (1981). Colonial New Hampshire: A History. KTO Press. ISBN 0-527-18715-1. 
  • Lawrence, Robert Fowler (1856). The New Hampshire churches. Claremont Manufacturing Co. 
  • Moody, Robert (1963). "Thomas Gorges, Proprietary Governor of Maine, 1640-1643". Proceedings of the Massachusetts Historical Society (Volume 75). JSTOR 25080568.  (Contains details on Burdett's trial in Maine.)
  • Moore, Susan Hardman (2007). Pilgrims: New World Settlers & the Call of Home. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press. ISBN 978-0-300-11718-9. OCLC 122337947. 
  • Parliamentary Army Chaplains, 1642-1651
Government offices
Preceded by
Thomas Wiggin
Governor of the Upper Plantations of New Hampshire
1637-1641
Succeeded by
Thomas Dudley
as Governor of Massachusetts Bay Colony