Robert Jennison was born 1607 in Colchester, Essex, England to Robert Jennison (1583-1652) and Elizabeth Favour (1596-1634) and died 4 July 1690 Watertown, Middlesex County, Massachusetts of unspecified causes. He married Elizabeth Unknown1 (-1638) 1628 in Essex, England. He married Grace Unknown1 (1608-1686) 1639 in Watertown, Middlesex County, Massachusetts.

Robert Jennison (1607-1690) Early New England Emigrant

Vital Stats

  • Son of Rev Dr Robert Jennison and Elizabeth Favour
  • 1607 : Birth in Colchester, Essex Co, England
  • 1628 : Marriage to Elizabeth in England.
  • 1631 : Migration to Massachusetts
  • 1638-Oct-30 : First wife Elizabeth died
  • 1639 : Marriage to Grace ____ (1608-1686) in Watertown, MA, (and she died Nov 26, 1686.)
  • 1690-Jul-04 : Died in Watertown, MA


The Jennison and Jennings Family of New England originated with two brothers (William and Robert) who emigrated from England to American at the time of Gov Winthop's fleet to form Massachusetts Bay Colony in 1630.

William Jennison built a house in 1630 in Charlestown, but sold out in 16-Aug-1631 to move closer to his brother in Watertown. He was captain of a militia company there and admitted a freeman in 18-May-1641. He had originated from London where he was partner with Richard Spitty at Grey's Inn there. He was pilot on the boat Thunder that sailed to Bermuda in Oct-1633. He commanded a company of militia in a battle with the Pequot Indians in 1636.

Genforum has him born in 1607, which is a better date than 1615. In one book, Cutler seems to think the Robert and Elizabeth were married when they sailed from England, but he would have been only 15 years old(?). Arriving directly in Watertown in Aug 1631 and directly appointed as Ensign in Captain Patrick's militia.

Robert Jennison is the pioneer emigrant for this family in New England. Appointed Ensign in Captain Patrick's Company, 16-Aug-1631. A proprietor in town and admitted freeman in 1645. As attorney for his brother William, he sold land in 1657.

He was the grantee of six lots of land in Watertown. His honestall of 6 acres was in the angle where Cambridge Road and Bank Lane began, a little to the east from Mill Bridge (east of the lowest falls in Charles River at the head of the tidewater) (Cambridge Road, that is the road to the college, is now called Mt. Auburn St). Besides this we find him in 1664 in possession of 80acres abd afterwards seems to have owned much more. In a deed given him Aug 10 1672 he calls himself "yeoman". A sort of honary title given in colonial times only to men of worth and substance.

Robert's will was dated 1688, codicil in 1689 and proved out in 07-Oct-1690. Therein he bequeathed to his wife; daughter Mary Warren; son-in-law George Reed; son Samuel; and grandsons Robert and William Jennison. To his grandsons he gave land that formerly belonged to his brother, William. He also mentions in the will, Samuel as his third son. If this is correct, the one of which we have no record must have died in infancy as did the first one, at any rate he did not survive him or lead children. To his daughter Micael Warren he gave in his will 40 shillings, to his son-in-law George Reed 20 shillings, to his grandson Willian Jennison 40 acres of land "which was my brother's formerly granted to him by this town." To his grandson Robert Jennison, "thirty acres of my farm which was formerly my Brother, William Jennsion's" After his wife's death, his son Samuel was to have the whole estate except as given above.

It is anybody's guess as to the date of Robert Jennison's birth. His wife Elizabeth, who died in 1638, according to Bond, Vinton and Watertown records, aged 30 years. At the prevailing time most of the men were about 2 years senior to their wives, which would make Robert's birth 1606-8. Vinton, however says that Robert was very much younger than his brother William, so much so that he was unable to be admitted freeman, nor was he amoung the first proprietors. So I simply assume that in this particular case, that Robert took unto himself a wife, who was prehaps his senior instead of junior and placed his birth about 1610. It does not matter, however. And as far as his place of birth is concerned, that is not known. That Robert and William came from Colchester, Essex County, England is also a matter of record and further, William was in the year of April 8, 1657 still of Colchester, England when his brother, Robert, as his attorney, conveyed to Edmund Rice two hundred acres of land in Framingham, Mass which was granted to him in 1638 by the General Court. All this action makes it quite probable that Robert and William called Colchester at least home. Whether they were born there of not I do not know. (C.W. Eldridge)

Marriage & Family

1st Marriage: Elizabeth Jennison

His will implies that the first two sons died young

  1. Infant Jennison (1636?) - First son / died young
  2. Elizabeth Jennison (1637-) - married deacon George Reed of Woburn.

2nd Marriage: Grace Jennison

  1. Michal Jennison (1640-1713) - married 1) Robert Bloise and 2) Captain John Warren
  2. Infant Jennison - 2nd son / died young
  3. Ensign Samuel Jennison (1642-1702) - "his third son"


Offspring of Robert Jennison and Elizabeth Unknown1 (-1638)
Name Birth Death Joined with
Infant Jennison (c1636-)
Elizabeth Jennison (1637-)

Offspring of Robert Jennison and Grace Unknown1 (1608-1686)
Name Birth Death Joined with
Michal Jennison (1640-1713) 17 December 1640 Watertown, Middlesex County, Massachusetts 14 July 1713 Watertown, Middlesex County, Massachusetts Richard Bloise (1622-1665) Richard Bloise (1622-1665) John Warren (1622-1703)
Infant Jennison (c1641-)
Samuel Jennison (1642-1701) 15 October 1642 Watertown, Middlesex County, Massachusetts October 1701 Watertown, Middlesex County, Massachusetts Judith Nucombe (1645-1723)



  • New England Families Genealogical Memoris of Boston and Eastern Massachusetts - Vol 2, page 884-885. by William Cutler, Publ 1908. Google Books.
  • Historic Homes and places in New England Genealogy - Vol 2. page 736 by William Cutler, Publ 1908. Google Books.
  • Gen Forum - Robert Gennison


Footnotes (including sources)