b.1604 Norwich, Norfolk, England
d.bef 8 Sep 1690 Monomoit, Barnstable, Massachusetts, United States
m. est 1599
m. 24 Jun 1627
Facts and Events
Burial Hill, Ma, Now Chatham, Port
Cape Cod Cemeteries Gravestones dated up to 1860
Part 1 of 3 - Upper Cape Bourne, Sandwich, Mashpee, Falmouth, Barnstable
William Nickerson 1690
IN MEMORY OF WILLIAM NICKERSON ENGLAND 1604 - MASSACHUSETTS 1689-1690 BOSTON 1637 - FREEMAN 1638 - YARMOUTH 1640 DEPUTY TO CENTRAL COURT 1655 - FOUNDER OF CHATHAM RELIGIOUS TEACHER - USEFUL CITIZEN - FIRST OF THE NAME IN AMERICA PROGENITOR OF FIFTY THOUSAND DESCENDANTS
HIS WIFE ANNE (BUSBY) NICKERSON ENGLAND 1609 - MASSACHUSETTS 1686+
THEIR CHILDREN ELIZABETH (MARRIED TRUSTRAM HEDGES) - ROBERT (MARRIED - ) SAMUEL (MARRIED MARY BELL) - SARAH (MARRIED NATHANIEL COVEL) JOHN (MARRIED SARAH WILLIAMS) - WILLIAM (MARRIED MERCY WILLIAMS) JOSEPH (MARRIED RUHAMAH -)
THIS TABLET SET ON THIS THE PROBABLE BURIAL PLACE OF WILLIAM NICKERSON (1) WITH THE PERMISSION OF THE TOWN OF CHATHAM 1915 BY WILLIAM NICKERSON OF CAMBRIDGE (9) AMOS(8) JONATHAN (7) JONATHAN (6) SETH (5) JONATHAN (4) THOMAS (3) WILLIAM (2) WILLIAM (1)
This is a large granite monument located in the Nickerson family cemetery. [Elizabeth m. Robert Eldrdge, also had son Thomas who died young, and son Nicholas who didn't.]
Source:Library of Cape Cod history genealogy, "William Nickerson by James W. Hawes, p. 1590. The following passage is notable in that most genealogists are unabashed eulogists, whereas this critique is somewhat more judgmental.
William Nickerson was a man of intelligence and of great energy and strength of will, which degenerated into obstinancy. He could not brook opposition nor readily accomodate himself to his neighbors. He was litigious, insisting upon the letter of what he thought his rights. He was no doubt a religious man, and at Monomoy acted as a religious teacher to the infant settlement, but he could not agree with his Yarmouth brethren and had at least one of his children baptized in Barnstable. His purchase of land at Monomoy was doubtless in part dictated by a desire of independence and his intenton to found a settlement of which he should be the head. After his removal to Monomoy he resisted the authority both of Yarmouth and Eastham, which the colony court successively extended over the place. His purchase at Monomoy was contrary to a salutary law of the colony of which he could not have been unaware, although when confronted with its penalty, he claimed ignorance. He more than once expressed regret that he had violated the law but at no time did he alter his course. His persistence in the end, it is true, brought him substantial victory, but his unaccomdating spirit made many years of his life a series of conflicts with the colonial authorities and others, in which he was almost uniformly worsted. As has been seen, he disposed of all his property before his death and therefore his name does not appear on the probate records. This action on his part was perhaps due to distrust of the public authorities, produced by his years of conflict with them.
William C. Smith warns the reader in Source:A history of Chatham, Massachusetts : formerly the constablewick or village of Monomoit, with maps and illustrations and numerous genealogical notes, p. 77, "It is to be regretted that there is so little on record regarding the Nickerson side of the case. The statements of the Colony Court must, therefore, be taken by the reader with due allowance."