Person:Edward Bangs (1)

Edward Bangs
b.Abt 1591
m. Abt 1620
  • HEdward BangsAbt 1591 - Bef 1677/78
  • WLydia Hicks1612 - Est 1634
m. Abt 1633
  1. John BangsAbt 1635 -
m. Abt 1635
  1. Lt. Joshua Bangs1637 - 1709/10
  2. Rebecca BangsAbt 1638 - Bef 1677
  3. Sarah Bangs1638 - 1682/83
  4. Jonathan BangsAbt 1640 - 1728
  5. Lydia BangsAbt 1642 - Aft 1705/06
  6. Hannah Bangs1644 - 1677
  7. Bethiah Bangs1650 - 1696
  8. Mercy Bangs1651 - Bef 1691/92
  9. Apphia Bangs1651 - Aft 1722
Facts and Events
Name Edward Bangs
Gender Male
Birth? Abt 1591 by age mentioned in will
Christening? 28 Oct 1591 Panfield, Essex, EnglandIf speculative parents accepted
Marriage Abt 1620 to Unknown (17041)
Immigration? 1623 Plymouth, Plymouth, Massachusetts, United States
Marriage Abt 1633 to Lydia Hicks
Marriage Abt 1635 Eastham, Barnstable Co., Massachusettsto Rebecca Hobart
Alt Marriage Bet 1634 and 1636 Eastham, Barnstable, MAto Rebecca Hobart
Will[1] 19 Oct 1677 Eastham, Barnstable, Massachusetts, United States
Alt Death? 16 Feb 1677/78 Eastham, Barnstable, Massachusetts, United StatesCitation needed
Death[1] Bef 5 Mar 1677/78 Eastham, Barnstable, Massachusetts, United States(date of probate)
Other? Speculative parents?: John Banges and Jane Chavis 

Edward Bangs arrived at Plymouth aboard the Anne in 1623. His second (or third?) wife is believed to have been Rebecca Hobart, though that has not been proven conclusively (Anderson, p. 91, citing NEHGR, Vol. 121, p. 4, 56). He was a shipwright, directed the labor on the 1st vessel built in the Colony [this is questioned by Anderson, p. 91], and died at Eastham, Barnstable County in 1678.

"Edward Bangs, one of the seven who began the settlement at Nausett in 1645, came over from England in the Ann in 1623, a fellow passenger with Nicholas Snow. At this period he was about thirty-two years of age, but whether a married or a single man is not positively known. In the beginning of the year 1624, it having been decided to allow each person who came over in the first three ships, one acre apiece to be laid out near the settlement as possible, for planting land, which each was to use for seven years, the records show that 'Bangs' was assigned four acres 'towards Eel River,' while Nicholas Snow was allowed the use of one acre. From this fact, it has been supposed Mr. Bangs was a married man with children at this early date. Mr. Bangs is mentioned in the records as being of John Jenney's company, which numbered thirteen persons, and to whcih 'the twelfth lot' of cattle fell at the division, May 22, 1627. To this company 'fell,' says the recrod, 'the great white back cow, which was brought over with the first of the Ann.' Both Bradford and Morton say the first neat cattle were brought over in the 1624. "It having been decided at a court, Jan. 3rd, 1627-8, to allow every person twenty acres of land, besides the land each person had already, and Mr. Bangs, with Gov. Bradford, Edward Winslow, John Howland, Francis Cook and Joshua Pratt, was chosen with instructions to lay out the land near the water on both sides of the settlement, and to lay the lots out '5 acres in breadth by the water side, and 4 acres in length.' These twenty acres laid out for each person were for tillage. At this period, no meadow ground had been divided in Plymouth. Each year the planters were shown where to cut their hay and how much, by men appointed. They now continued the same rules relative to this matter, which were satisfactory.

"Mr. Bangs was a tax payer in Plymouth, March 25, 1633, and his tax is put down as twelve shillings. The same year, with Mr. John Doane, he was appointed to divided meadow, and in 1634, with Nicholas Snow and others, to lay out roads at Plymouth. In 1634 and 1635, he was one of the assessors of Plymouth. In 1637, 'for Eel River' he was appointed one of the committee to view the hay ground and assist in laying it out. Among others appointed with him were Mr. Wm. Brewster, Mr. Stephen Hopkins, Mr. John Doane of Plymouth, and Jonathan Brewster of Duxbury. He was one of the grand jury the same year, also in 1638 and 1640. In 1639, he was an arbitrator to settle a case between Samuel Gorton and Thomas Clark. In 1642, he was employed to superintend the building of a barque at Plymouth, to which he contributed one-sixteenth part of the amount reased for its construction. This vessel is supposed to have been the first built in the Colony.

"Mr. Bangs was the first treasurer of Eastham, after the settlement in 1645. He was a surveyor of highways in 1647, 1650 and 1651, and perhaps a deputy to the court in 1652, which year he was also of the Grand Inquest. In 1657, he was allowed 'to draw wine' and strong water at Eastham, with instructions not to sell to the Indians. In 1658, he agreed to find"2 hoursesw and 2 men for the country's service,' upon the town providing 'sufficient furniture for them.' In 1659, he 'promised freely' to find 'a man and horse with complete furniture, for the term of one year for the country's service.' Upon an order of the court to appoint overseers of the poor, with Nicholas Snow and Richard Higgins, he was appointed for Eastham in 1659. After this he took but little interest in public matters.

"Mr. Bangs died at Eastham, about the last of February in the year 1677-8, at the age of about 86 years, leaving no wife. His will, a lengthy document, in which he makes known his age, bears dat Oct. 19, 1677. It was presented for proof at Plymouth, March 5, 1677-8, Mr. John Freeman and Mr. Thomas Crosby upon oath, testifying as to its being his last will. Mr. Bangs' younger son, Jonathan, was appointed the 'whole and sole executor,' who, it would appear, was somewhat of a favorite with his father, from whose hands he received a good share of his landed estate, which was considerable, he having been of that favored number called 'Purchasers or Old Comers.' Mr. Bangs undoubtedly resided with Jonathan the last years of his life."[6]


The last will and testament of Edward Bangs

"This 19 of October 1677 I, Edward Banges, aged 86 yeers, being well stricken in years and now knowing the day and houre when God may call mee hence, yett being in health and perfect memory, doe leave this as my Last Will and Testament.

"First, I make my son, Jonathan, my whole and sole Executor to whom I give all my Purchase Land att Namskekett and that way lying between Namskekett and satuckett Brooke lying next to meddow graunted to Governor Prence, bounded by a ditch runing from the upland towards the creeke, two acres and an half be it more or lesse, bounded att the other end by a creeke. And I give him all my Purchase Land att Paomett and all privilidges therunto belonging, and I give him an acree and an half of meddow lying att a place called The Acars, alsoe one acree lying att the harbour’s mouth, alsoe I give him a parsell of upland and meddow lying att Rocke Harbour which I had in exchange of John Done. Alsoe all those things which I have att his house I give unto him.

"Secondly, I give to my son, John, that twenty acrees of up land att Pockett that hee hath built upon, and five acrees more adjoyning to it to run from end to end. And I give him that land which I have att Pockett Island and two acrees of meddow that lyeth att the Boate Meddow next to that which hee bought of Daniell Cole, and three quarters of an acree att the head of the Boate Meddow.

"Thirdly, I give unto my son, Joshua, the house that I lived in and all the housing belonging to it, and twenty eight acrees of land adjoyning to it that lyeth neare it, and I give him three acrees of meddow att the Boate Meddow, lying at the Sandey Banke, and one acree of meddow that lyeth att the Boate Meddow which is called the Salt House Acree, alsoe four acrees of meddow lying att the head of Black-fish Creek. Likewise I give to Joshua fourteen acrees of upland that lyeth att Pockett next to the land of Jonathan Sparrow.

"Fourth, I give to my son Jonathan’s eldest son, Edward Banges, twenty five acrees of upland lying att Pochett Field, be it more or lesse, alsoe I give unto him one acree of meddow att Rocke Harboare att the head of the meddow next to Leiftenant Roger’s and half an acre of meddow lying att Great Namscekett which I bought of Daniell Cole.

"Fiftly, I give unto my daughters, my Daughter Howes, my Daughter Higgens, my Daughter Done, my Daughter Hall, my Daughter Merrick, and my Daughter Atwood, four pounds apeece at my decease. And I give to my grandchildren, viz, the children of my daughter, Rebeckah, deceased, four pounds att my decease only with this proviso respecting the legacyes given to these my daughters and grandchildren: that the estate left att my death doth amount to soe much; otherwise what is left be equally devided amongst them – the grandchildren to have a seaventh parte. and heerunto I doe sett my hand and seale. Edward Banges."

"An Agreement made betwixt John Banges and Jonathan Banges, the sonnes of Edward Banges, deceased, this sixt day of March in the yeer of our Lord one thousand six hundred seaventy and seaven in reference to a parsell of land given by the said Edward Banges in his Last Will and testament to his grand child, Edward Banges, the son of Jonathan Banges: that the said John Banges shall make use of this land rent free untill the said Edward Banges, to whom the land is given, comes to be of age. Or, incase the said Edward dies before hee comes to be of age, then untill such a tearme of yeers on which hee would have bine of age if hee had lived. Alsoe, it is agreed by them that the said John Banges, during the time of making use of this land, shall not carry off any of the stones or timber except it be for the fencing of the said land in particular, excepting onely that middle fence which not att the making of this Agreement runs betwixt the field and pasture."Edward Bangs served on several town committees, and held a responsible position within the community.Edward Bangs and his family moved to Cape Cod in the 1640s when the town of Nauset (later renamed Eastham) was being established. In Nauset, Edward was licensed to sell alcohol.

Possible Origin

According to The Great Migration Directory: Immigrants to New England, 1620–1640 published in 2015 the parents and origins of Edward Bangs are not proven. [7] In the opinion of that source, there is no compelling evidence he was son of John Bangs and Jane Chavis.

In 1931 Mary Walton Ferris in Dawes-Gates Ancestral Lines 2:61[8] states that the family name is first found in Norfolk and later in Essex and extensive research has been done in England. Previous claims of this family in Chichester, Sussex were in error. Two baptisms for an Edward Bangs were found one of which was 28 Oct 1591 in Panfield, Essex to John Bangs and Jane Chavis. He was grandson of Richard and Margaret Bangs, and great-grandson of Thomas or William Bangs. Mary Walton Ferris concludes,

  • "Though no documentary proof has been found positively identifying Edward1 of New England with the Edward above, the significant fact that Edward1 Bangs, in his will of 1677, called himself eighty-six years old, establishes his birth-date as 1591; he named his eldest son "John" presumably after his father, and he was called "Mr." as was his presumed grandfather, Richard, who was a sheriff of Norwich in 1596 to which office he was elected their number by the mayor and alderman. Need of brevity requires omission of all detailed findings, but the facts stated are accepted [by Mary Walton Ferris] as presumptive evidence of such identification."

Robert Charles Anderson[9][10] correctly concludes that the parentage is not proven, because Mary Walton Ferris did not publish "all detailed findings", and what she did publish is insufficient to prove his identity. Mary Ferris felt that the investigations "over a period of years in the English localities where Bangs families are recorded" were sufficient to justify accepting this result. But there appears to be some clear assumption here. The father's will does not identify where Edward is living (presumably nothing was found to show he was in England), and no documents are found in New England that connect the immigrant to this Edward. Even Ferris concedes there is no documentary proof positively identifying Edward1 of New England with the Edward of England.

At the same time, there are no other credible parents that have been proposed, no fact or circumstantial arguments presented by Ferris that has been refuted, so this clearly remains as a working hypothesis, pending future findings. Robert Charles Anderson does not present any evidence of his own in making his judgement, but merely relies on what Ferris actually published. Somebody may be able, some day, to show that the son of John Banges stayed in England, or somebody may find the transfer of the legacy in the will of John Banges to New England, and give the world a clearer answer. The part of this argument that is most convincing is that the baptism of only two Edward Banges are found, and one matches the expected birth year exactly. The rest is largely circumstantial, showing that everything we know is compatible with the proposed parentage, and not self-contradictory, but of little or no probative value.

The will of John Banges of Hempstead is found in Source:Bangs, Charles H. Edwards Banges, the Pilgrim, p. 11. While it is surprising that the will does not state his son was in New England, at the same time after giving each son an equal legacy in money, his wife's legacy is to revert to only three of the four (i.e., not Edward, which might make sense if he was off in New England). This source also points out that John Banges signed his name Banges, as did Edward "the Pilgrim". The author is the secretary of the Society of the The Edward Bangs Descendants, which appears to have played a part in the investigation "over a period of years" that is mentioned by Ferris.

The identification of Edward Bangs parents as John and Jane Banges is printed in many sources, (e.g., Source:Banks, Charles Edwards. English Ancestry and Homes of the Pilgrim Fathers, p. 138; Source:Jacobus, Donald Lines. Ancestry of Lorenzo Ackley and His Wife Emma Arabella Bosworth, p. 43, Source:Stratton, Eugene Aubrey. Plymouth Colony, Its History and People 1620 - 1691, p. 238). Some of this is undoubtedly a reflection of the reputation of Mary Walton Ferris, and the lack of alternative explanations.

  1. 1.0 1.1 Edward Bangs, in Anderson, Robert Charles. The Great Migration Begins: Immigrants to New England, 1620-1633. (Boston: New England Historic Genealogical Society, 1995).

    ORIGIN: Unknown (but see COMMENTS) MIGRATION: 1623 on the Anne FIRST RESIDENCE: Plymouth REMOVES: Eastham by 1645 OCCUPATION: Innkeeper ("Liberty is granted unto Edward Bangs to draw and sell wine and strong waters at Eastham, provided it be for the refreshment of the English, and not to be sold to the Indians," 6 October 1657 [PCR 3:123]; an account of liquor brought into Eastham dated 28 November 1664 included "Edward Bangs, six gallons of liquor" [PCR 4:100]). FREEMAN: In "1633" Plymouth list of freemen in proximity to those admitted on 1 January 1632/3 [PCR 1:4]. In list of 7 March 1636/7 [PCR 1:52]. In Plymouth section of list of 1639, annotated as gone and added to list for Eastham [PCR 8:174, 177]. In Eastham portion of list possibly dated to 1658 [PCR 8:201]. In Eastham list of 29 May 1670 [PCR 5:278]. EDUCATION: Signed his will and several deeds. OFFICES: Deputy to Plymouth Court for Eastham, 7 June 1652 [PCR 3:9]; Plymouth grand jury, 7 March 1636/7, 5 June 1638, 2 June 1640, 1 March 1641/2, 7 June 1652 [PCR 1:54, 87, 155; 2:34; 3:9]; Plymouth petit jury, 4 October 1636, 3 January 1636/7, 3 September 1639, 3 December 1639, 3 March 1639/40, 3 August 1641, 6 September 1641, 7 December 1641, 1 March 1641/2, 6 June 1643, 7 November 1643 [PCR 1:44, 7:4, 13, 14, 16, 22, 23, 25, 28, 35, 36]; committee to lay out land, 3 January 1627/8, 1 February 1640/1 [PCR 12:14, 2:7]; committee to divide meadow, 1 July 1633 [PCR 1:14]; committee to assess taxes, 5 January 1634/5, 1 March 1635/6 [PCR 1:33, 38]; Plymouth representative to committee to reunite Plymouth and Duxbury (but he did not serve), 14 March 1635/6 [PCR 1:41]; committee to allocate hay ground, 20 March 1636/7, 2 October 1637, 1 June 1640 [PCR 1:55, 67, 153]; committee to lay out highway, 1 February 1640/1, 24 February 1652 [PCR 2:7, 3:61]; coroner's jury, 30 October 1667 [PCR 4:169]; Eastham highway surveyor, 1 June 1647, 4 June 1650, 3 June 1651 [PCR 2:115, 155, 168]; Eastham treasurer, 1646-1665 [Bangs Gen 11]. In Plymouth section of 1643 list of men able to bear arms [PCR 8:189]. ESTATE: In the 1623 Plymouth division of land "Bangs" [no first name] received four acres as a passenger on the Anne in 1623 [PCR 12:6]. In the 1627 Plymouth division of cattle "Edward Banges" was the thirteenth person in the twelfth company [PCR 12:1]. BIRTH: About 1591 based on his stated age of eighty-six on 19 October 1677 [ PCPR 3:2:106] (although this may be exaggerated).
    DEATH: Eastham between 19 October 1677 (date of will) and 5 March 1677/8 (date of probate).
    MARRIAGE: (1) By about 1633 Lydia Hicks, baptized St. Mary Magdalen, Bermondsey, Surrey, 6 September 1612, daughter of ROBERT HICKS [TAG 51:58]; she apparently died within a year or two. (2) By about 1635 Rebecca ____; she joined her husband as grantor on a deed of 22 June 1651 [PCR 12:209].

  2.   Savage, James. A Genealogical Dictionary of the First Settlers of New England: Showing Three Generations of Those Who Came Before May, 1692, on the Basis of Farmer's Register. (Boston: Little, Brown, and Co, 1860-1862)

    BANGS, EDWARD, Plymouth, b. perhaps 1592, at Chichester, Co. Sussex, came in the Ann, 1623, and m. after 1627, as is presum. Lydia, d. of Robert Hicks, had Rebecca; John; Sarah; Jonathan, b. 1640; Lydia; Hannah; Joshua; Bethia, 28 May 1650; Mercy, and Apphia, tw. 15 Oct. 1651. He had rem. with Gov. Prence, 1644, to Eastham, was a shipwright, and direct. the labor, says a reasona. tradit. on the first vessel built in the Col. tho. earlier ones had been launch. in Mass. was rep. 1647, and sev. other yrs. d. 1677, in his will of that yr. 19 Oct. pro. 5 Mar. 1678, furnish. evid. to us, that all his ch. were then liv. exc. Rebecca, wh. had m. 26 Oct. 1654 Jonathan Sparrow, and left childr. Sarah m. 1656, Thomas Howes; Lydia m. 24 Dec. 1661, Benjamin Higgins; Hannah m. 30 Apr. 1662, John Doane; Bethia m. Gershom Hall of Harwich; Mercy m. 28 Dec. 1670, Stephen Merrick; and Apphia m. the same day, prob. John Knowles, and next Joseph Atwood. No certainty is attaina. as to order of births of most of these ch.

  3.   Hills, Leon Clark. History and Genealogy of the Mayflower Planters and First Comers to ye Olde Colonie. (Washington, D. C.: Hills Publishing Company, 1936-1941).

    vol II, p55 vol I, p. 84: came on the 'Anne', 1623, with his family. Shipwright.

  4.   The New England Historical and Genealogical Register. (Boston: New England Historic Genealogical Society)
    Vol. 8:368; 10:157.
  5.   Dudley, Dean. History and genealogy of the Bangs family in America: with genealogical tables and notes, tracing the descendants, male and female, from the Pilgrim ancestor, Edward Bangs of Plymouth and Eastham. (Montrose, Mass.: D. Dudley, 1896).

    Edw m1 Lydia HICKS, dau of Robt Hicks. She d. after birth of son John.Other children by m2 Rebecca; dau Lydia in memory of Lydia, first wife.

  6. Josiah Paine, “Early Settlers of Eastham,” Library of Cape Cod History and Genealogy, 33 and 34 (1916), cited at
  7. Robert Charles Anderson, The Great Migration Directory: Immigrants to New England, 1620–1640 (Boston, Massachusetts. New England Historic and Genealogical Society. 2015)
  8. Mary Walton Ferris, Dawes-Gates Ancestral Lines (n.p., 1931) 2:61
  9. Robert Charles Anderson, The Pilgrim Migration: Immigrants to Plymouth Colony, 1620-1633 (Boston, MA: NEHGS, 2004) 23-29
  10. Robert Charles Anderson, The Great Migration Begins (Boston, MA: NEHGS, 1995) 88-91
The Anne and The Little James (1623)
The Anne and the Little James left England together, and arrived a week or so apart in Plymouth. Most of the passengers were probably on the Anne, as the Little James was smaller and carried mostly cargo.
Sailed: May(?) 1623 from an unspecified port in England under William Peirce (Master Anne), Emanuel Althan (Captain Little James), and John Bridges (Master Little James).
Arrived: 10 July 1623 (the Anne) and about 10 days later (the Little James) at Plymouth, Massachusetts
Previous Vessel: Weston's ships (Swan, Charity, Sparrow) (1622)
Next Vessel: Jonathan (1623)

~60 (Full List)
Families of earlier immigrants: Patience and Fear Brewster - Elizabeth (Walker) Warren and daughters - Hester (Mathieu) Cooke and her children - Bridget (Lee) Fuller - Margaret Hicks and her children - Wife and daughter of William Hilton - Frances Palmer - Joshua Pratt - Barbara Standish
Other Passengers: Anthony Annable (and family) - Edward Bangs - Robert Bartlett - Mary Bucket - William Bridges - Thomas Clark - Christopher Conant - Anthony Dix - John Faunce - George Morton (and family) - Godbert Godbertson (and family) - Timothy Hatherly - Edward Holman - John Jenney (and family) - Manasseh Kempton - Experience Mitchell - George Morton (and family) - Ellen Newton - Oldham, John, his wife and sister - Christian Penn - Abraham Pierce - Nicholas Snow - Alice (Carpenter) Southworth - Francis Sprague - Stephen Tracy, wife, and daughter - Ralph Wallen

Resources: Primary Sources: Bradford's History of Plymouth Plantation - Mourt's Relation - Pilgrim Hall (wills and other contemporary documents)