Isaac Winslow

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The Honorable Isaac Winslow (1671 – December 14, 1738)[1] was an early settler and notable of the town of Marshfield, Massachusetts. A member of the prominent Winslow family of Plymouth, he served as a civil and military official in early 18th-century Massachusetts, a period marked by political transition.

Early Life and family[edit]

Isaac Winslow was the grandson of Mayflower passenger Edward Winslow (October 18, 1595 – 1655), a governor of Plymouth Colony and one of that colony's near-mythical "Pilgrims". Isaac's father, Josiah, also served as governor of Plymouth Colony, and as commander-in-chief of the colonial English forces during King Philip's War.

Winslow was born ca. 1671 on the family estate in the village of Marshfield.[2] His parents were Josiah Winslow and Penelope (Pelham) Winslow.[3] Of this generation of the family, Isaac and his sister Elizabeth (born April 8, 1664) were the only children to survive to adulthood, a sister and brother having each died within a year of their birth.[4]

Somewhere around the turn of the 17th century, Isaac built a house at the current intersection of Careswell Street and Webster Street in Marshfield, which still exists as the Historic 1699 Winslow House.[5]

On July 11, 1700, he married Sarah Wensley of Boston, in a ceremony presided over by the Reverend Cotton Mather.[6] The marriage produced six children; Josiah (born 1701), John (born 1703), Penelope (born 1704), Elizabeth (born 1707), Anna (born 1709 or 1710), and Edward (born 1714).[7]

Career[edit]

Active in local affairs, Winslow was appointed to the Plymouth County Inferior Court of Common Pleas in 1712, and served until 1738, for the last nine years as its chief justice. In 1715, he was commissioned a colonel in the Massachusetts militia and given charge of a regiment drawn from Plymouth County, and was a judge of the Court of Probate for Plymouth from 1718 to 1738.[8]

A decade after Plymouth's incorporation into Massachusetts, Winslow became prominent at a wider colonial level. In 1703, he was appointed for the first time to the Council for the Province of Massachusetts Bay. As a representative in the legislature's upper house, he and his fellow councilors were to serve as advisors to the Royal Governor in Boston, as well as passing laws and approving government expenditures.

Winslow's term in council was marked by a period of war and turbulent politics; Massachusetts was almost constantly fighting New England natives and French colonists in Canada, and several successive governors would clash with the lower House of Representatives on issues of finance and legislative appointments.

With the exception of 1715, Winslow served as a member of the council until 1736, for a time as its president.[9]

Death and burial[edit]

He died in Marshfield on December 14, 1738, having named as his heirs his wife Sarah, his sons John and Edward, and his daughters Penelope and Elizabeth.[10] He is buried in the Winslow Cemetery in Marshfield, Massachusetts, not far from the house that he built in 1699.

Legacy[edit]

His house, the 1699 Winslow House, still stands today in Marshfield. It has been converted into a historic house museum providing a glimpse into the lives of New England landed gentry prior to the Revolutionary War.[11]

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Kellogg, L. M. (1991). Mayflower Families through Five Generations: Descendants of the Pilgrims Who Landed at Plymouth, Ma.. December 1620. Vol. 5. Plymouth, Massachusetts: General Society of Mayflower Descendants. p. 10. 
  2. ^ Kellogg, L. M. (1991). Mayflower Families Through Five Generations: Descendants of the Pilgrims Who Landed at Plymouth, Ma. December 1620. Plymouth, Massachusetts: General Society of Mayflower Descendants. p. 10. 
  3. ^ Kellogg, L. M. (1991). Mayflower Families through Five Generations: Descendants of the Pilgrims Who Landed at Plymouth, Ma. December 1620. Plymouth, Massachusetts: General Society of Mayflower Descendants. p. 7. 
  4. ^ Kellogg. p. 8.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  5. ^ Krusell, Cynthia Hagar (2012). Winslows of Careswell in Marshfield. Marshfield, Massachusetts: Historical Research Associates. p. 23. 
  6. ^ Krusell, Cynthia Hagar (2012). Winslows of Careswell in Marshfield. Marshfield, MA: Historical Research Associates. p. 25. 
  7. ^ Kellogg. p. 11.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  8. ^ Krusell. p. 24.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  9. ^ Whitmore, William H. (1870). The Massachusetts Civil List for the Colonial and Provincial Periods 1630-1774. Albany: J. Munsell, State Street. pp. 49–59. 
  10. ^ Kellogg. p. 10.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  11. ^ 1699 Historic Winslow House and Cultural Center. "The Winslows". Retrieved March 26, 2014. 

References[edit]

  • Kellogg, L. M., ed. Mayflower Families through Five Generations: Descendants of the Pilgrims Who Landed at Plymouth, Ma.. December 1620. Vol. 5. Plymouth, Massachusetts: General Society of Mayflower Descendants, 1991.
  • Krusell, Cynthia Hagar; Bates, Betty Magoun. Marshfield: A Town of Villages 1640-1990. Marshfield Hills, Massachusetts: Historical Research Associates, 1990.
  • Winslows of Careswell in Marshfield. Marshfield, Massachusetts: Historical Research Associates, 2012.
  • 1699 Historic Winslow House and Cultural Center. "The Winslows".
  • Taylor, Alan. American Colonies: The Settling of North America. Vol. 1. The Penguin History of the United States. United States: Penguin Books, 2001.
  • Whitmore, William H. The Massachusetts Civil List for the Colonial and Provincial Periods 1630–1774. Albany: J. Munsell, State Street, 1870.
  • Winsor, Justin, ed. The Memorial History of Boston Including Suffolk County, Massachusetts 1630–1880. Vol. 2: "The Provincial Period". 4 vols. Boston: James R. Osgood and Company, 1881.