Thomas Bartlett was born circa 1606 in England and died 26 April 1654 Watertown, Middlesex County, Massachusetts of unspecified causes. He married Hannah Bartlett (c1613-1676) 1635 in Watertown, Middlesex County, Massachusetts.


Thomas Bartlett's origins are unknown. He came to New England as a servant to Mr. Pelham, probably in 1630, as he appeared in court for the theft of tools from his employer May 3, 1631. [1] [3] Thomas settled in Watertown where he was admitted to the church prior to 4 March 1634/5.

1630 Winthrop Fleet

Arrival of the Winthrop Colony, by William F. Halsall

He was a passenger on the in the Winthrop Fleet in 1630, part of The Great Migration. It was the largest fleet ever assembled to carry Englishmen overseas to a new homeland. It was a well planned and financed expedition comprising eleven ships that carried 700 immigrants from England to the Massachusetts Bay Colony. The group, led by Governor John Winthrop, sailed from April to July of 1630. The fleet landed at Salem. Of the 700 on board, 200 died during the voyage, and 100 returned to England soon after arrival. Some of the 400 remaining settlers stayed in Salem, but many moved on to Boston, Watertown, or other settlements.

Watertown Founders Monument

Watertown Founders Monument

He is listed on Watertown Founders Monument, commemorating the first settlers of Watertown, Massachusetts. The town was first known as Saltonstall Plantation, one of the earliest of the Massachusetts Bay Colony settlements. Founded in early 1630 by a group of settlers led by Richard Saltonstall and George Phillips, it was officially incorporated that same year. The alternate spelling "Waterton" is seen in some early documents.

1636 Dedham Compact =

First Church of Dedham.

He was one of the signatories to the Dedham Compact, a key historical document for the creation of the new colonial town of Dedham, Massachusetts, located in Norfolk County, Massachusetts. The first 35 signatures were collected in August 1636 and another 90 more soon thereafter. This document provided for the common governance and defense of the community. Dedham is known for keeping excellent historical records of its early years.

Marriage and Family

He was married to Hannah (Unknown) by February 28, 1636/7. Their children, all born in Watertown:

  1. Hannah Bartlett (1637-1639);
  2. Mehitabel Bartlett (1640-????);
  3. Hannah Bartlett (1643-????);
  4. Bathshua Bartlett (1646-1692);
  5. Abiah Bartlett (1651-1723),


Offspring of Thomas Bartlett and Hannah Bartlett (c1613-1676)
Name Birth Death Joined with
Hannah Bartlett (1637-1639)
Mehitable Bartlett (1640-)
Hannah Bartlett (1643-)
Bathshua Bartlett (1646-1692)
Abiah Abigail Bartlett (1651-1723) 28 May 1651 Watertown, Middlesex County, Massachusetts 13 September 1723 Waltham, Middlesex County, Massachusetts Jonathan Sanderson (1646-1735)


Vital Records

Research Notes

According to Anderson, Thomas Bartlett and his wife did little or no land purchasing or sales during their lifetime, as there are no recorded deeds for them in the Middlesex registry. [3]

Thomas died April 26, 1654 in Watertown "aged about 60 years". There is some doubt as to the accuracy of this statement, as it suggests a date of birth of 1594 - a bit old to have been a servant in 1631, and a bit old to be getting married in 1636/7. His will, dated April 22, 1653 and probated June 20, 1654 leaves 7 pounds, 10 shillings to each of his four daughters and the rest of his estate for life to his wife, Hannah. After her death, two-thirds of his wife's share was to be divided among his living children with the remaining third disposed as his wife desired. His wife, Hannah, was to be the executrix. [1] [2] [3]

The inventory of Thomas Bartlett's estate on June 9, 1654 totaled 181 pounds, 16 shillings of which 101 pounds, 10 shillings was real estate. [2] [3]

His widow died at Watertown, July 11, 1676.


  1. Pope, Pioneers of Massachusetts, page 35 : Pope, Charles Henry,The pioneers of Massachusetts, a descriptive list, drawn from records of the colonies, towns and churches and other contemporaneous documents. Publisher Boston, C.H. Pope;Published 1900; Pages 582 Pioneers of Massachusetts -
  2. Bond, Genealogies of the Families and Descendants of the Early Settlers of Watertown, pages 18 & 679. Google
  3. Anderson, The Great Migration Begins, Volume I, page 120


Footnotes (including sources)