If I were to ask you this question: What town do you think most closely relates to Halloween? Would you answer: Salem, Massachusetts?
My paternal ancestors were among the early settlers of the Salem area. Although I have done extensive research on this branch of my family, I have yet to actually visit the historic Salem area in person. It is certainly high on my bucket list. I have been able to conduct much of my research via Boston and other means; however, it would be nice if I can finally walk the actual ground some day.
I am pretty sure that I am the only one who has been successful in connecting the steps to my direct Lindall ancestors. There is still some work I need to do, as well as, preparing a more cohesive gathering of my research details. As I go along with my blog stories, it is my hope to share small pieces of this family branch at a time.
This week, I was able to find a very old, undivided back, Halloween Greeting postcard to feature in this blog. Originally, I thought it was going to be just a focus on the card itself this time around. However, it seems my ancestor spirits may be lingering around and gave me a surprise kick of inspiration yesterday morning. What better time to highlight a piece of my Salem family history than a blog featuring a Halloween Greeting card.
The Mary Lindall House:
Yesterday, I learned there will be a virtual tour of some of the historic houses in Salem, this year, as a fundraiser for the Historic Salem organization. It perked my interest enough to explore their website a bit further and I did not realize previously that they have a wonderful database section of their page where you can browse house histories of over 600 houses. What a great find! It is a very helpful research tool to have access to such online data that used to take so much effort and time to retrieve in person.
When I plugged in the surname “Lindall” in the search area, the Mary Lindall House came up. Upon first reading the history text, I thought it was pointing to my direct Mary ancestor. But after re-reading, I was able to determine the Mary Lindall of this house was actually the granddaughter of my direct Mary. I was either unaware that the house existed or had forgotten about it. Indeed, I had already realized various ancestor family members, whether direct or indirect, had owned much property in this area; but, I am also aware that there was a severe fire in Salem at one time. So, I did not expect to find any actual intact family houses in the present day.
Contained within the house history, from the Historic Salem website, is an illustration of the home but I do not wish to infringe on any copyrights. If you wish to look at the illustration, you may find the page location via my sources listed at the end of this blog piece. Or, you may enter the street address, listed below, for an online search and get a current day picture that will show up.
This house was built between 1755 and 1760 (although the plaque says 1755) and is located at 314 Essex Street, in Salem. The property was owned by Mary and her niece Elizabeth Gray. The deed transferred from Samuel Kerwin to Mary Lindall in 1760.
The house was later owned by Capt. William Osgood, whose daughter Susan lived there until 1920. In 1947, it was bought by the American Red Cross to use as their Salem Chapter House. It has been sold since then but I am uncertain how many times nor any information about the current owner–not something that I will be researching at the moment.
First Paternal Ancestor:
James Lindall was my first paternal ancestor to come over, from England, to the soil of Massachusetts in about 1638. By 1640, he was known to be in Duxbury and in 1645 he was a proprietor in Bridgewater. As was common in this family, James was married to a Mary (of which there are several in this family line). The last name of this Mary unknown at this time. I may have her last name in my records that are not easily accessible for me at this moment. They had at least two children. Their daughter Abigail married Capt. Samuel Wadsworth. And their son Timothy was my direct ancestor, who I will explore below. Both James and Mary died about 1652. Their children were minors at the time and were committed by the Court to the care of Constant Southworth.
Born in 1648, Mary Veren married Timothy Lindall, son of James and Mary (listed above) in 1672. He was born in Duxbury, Mass., in 1642, and died on Jan. 6, 1698/9 at age 56. They lived in a home near the Burying Point, the location of their final resting place. Mary lived to the age of 83 and died on Jan. 7, 1731/2. She had been a shopkeeper even into her advanced years. Timothy and Mary had nine children. At first, I thought it was this Mary that owned the Mary Lindall House but after studying the history closely I realized it was actually her granddaughter.
My direct link to Timothy and Mary:
Their son, Nathaniel, is my direct ancestor. He was born in 1679 and died of Small Pox in 1711. He is buried in the Granary Burial Ground, located on Tremont Street, in Boston. A few years ago, I was fortunate enough to obtain a copy of his will which I will share in a future story. This child was somewhat forgotten about along the genealogy trail. It has taken a great amount of research on my part, over the years, to connect the steps along that trail. In addition, the name Nathaniel was carried down several times complicating my efforts to square who is who. I will explore more of them in future stories. This Nathaniel moved from Salem to Boston where he was a merchant. He was married to Elizabeth Smith. They had a son Nathaniel (1707/8-bef. 1776) and a daughter Elizabeth (1711-?). Again, I will share more in future stories.
Below are pictures I have taken during my visits to Nathaniel’s grave at the Granary Burial Ground.
Nathaniel’s stone reads: “Here Lyes Buried Y Body of Mr. Nathaniell Lindall Aged 31 years Departed This Life Sep. 1711”.
Children of Mary (Veren) and Timothy Lindall:
Mary born 1674.
James born 1675; died in 1753 at age 78; married in 1702 to Elizabeth Corwin. She died in 1706; then he married second in 1708 to Mary Weld. Children of James and Elizabeth were daughter Elizabeth born in 1703; she married Edward Gray in 1739–they had a daughter Elizabeth. James and Elizabeth had a son in 1704 that did not survive and then a daughter Mary born in 1705; died 1776 at age 70. This is the Mary who owned the Mary Lindall House.
Timothy born 1677; died 1760 at age 82. He was a judge and served in several public service roles which I will explore in greater depth at a later time.
Nathaniel (my direct ancestor, detailed above) born 1679; died in 1711.
Abigail born 1681; died in 1737 at age 56. She married in 1704 to Capt. B. Pickman who died in 1719 at age 46. Abigail married secondly in 1730 to Rev. Jenison.
Sarah born about 1682; died 1750.
Caleb born 1684; died 1751 at age 67. He was married to a Sarah who died in 1734 at age 60.
Rachel born 1686; died 1743 at age 56. She married in 1713 to Thomas Barnard and was a widow in 1718. She later married by 1726 to Samuel Barnard who died in 1762 at age 77.
Veren born 1689; died 1708 at age 19.
Resting Place of Timothy and Mary:
Both Timothy and Mary (Veren) Lindall are buried in the Burying Point Cemetery which is the oldest cemetery in Salem being established c.1637. It has also been known as the Charter Street Cemetery and the Salem Burying Point. It is located at 51 Charter Street, in Salem. My brother took a picture of their stones a few years ago. I have segmented the picture into three images to show the stones a little larger. The script is not very clear but I have written each below the pictures.
Timothy’s stone (shown above) reads: “Here lyes Buried ye Body of Mr. Timothy Lindall, aged 56 yrs & 7 mos. Dec. 6 Jan 1698/9”.
Mary’s stone (shown above) reads: “Here lyes Buried ye Body of Mrs. Mary Lindall wife to Mr. Timothy Lindall, aged 83 yrs. D. 7 Jan. 1731/2.”
Extended Family of Mary (Verin) Lindall:
Mary Veren was the daughter of Nathaniel Veren (1623-1731) and Mary (____) Putnam (1624-1694). They were married about 1648. Nathaniel’s wife Mary was married secondly to Thomas Putnam on Sept. 14, 1666, in Salem. Thomas died in 1686. Mary Veren had a half sibling, Joseph Putnam (1669-1724); he married Elizabeth Porter. Nathaniel Veren was the son of Philip (1581-?) and Dorcas Veren. Nathaniel had siblings Rebecca Veren (1616-1621) and Philip Veren (1619-1664).
Extended Family of James and Elizabeth (Corwin) Lindall:
James Lindall (1675-1753), son of Timothy and Mary (Veren) Lindall married Elizabeth Corwin in 1702. Elizabeth died in 1706; she was the daughter of Jonathan Corwin (1640-1718) and Elizabeth (Sheaf) Gibbs. Jonathan purchased what is now known as “The Witch House” in 1675. This house, located at 310 Essex Street, is the only one in Salem that currently allows visitors that is connected back to the Salem Witch Trials. The house opened as a museum in 1948. Jonathan was a merchant but also a judge during the Salem Witch Trials of 1692; he was the son of George and Elizabeth (Herbert) Corwin and is buried in the Broad Street Cemetery, in Salem.
James and Elizabeth (Corwin) Lindall had three children: Elizabeth Corwin born 1703, she married Edward Gray in 1739; a son born and died same day in 1704; and daughter Mary who was born in 1705 and died 1776 at age 70. This is the Mary of the Mary Lindall House, she never married nor had children and was the granddaughter of my direct Mary (Veren) Lindall.
Elizabeth (Lindall) and Edward Gray had a daughter Elizabeth Gray who was orphaned at an early age. She and Mary Lindall were the joint owners of the Mary Lindall House.
James Lindall remarried after the death of his wife Elizabeth (Corwin) to Mary Weld in 1708. They had seven children.
There are many variations found in the records of the surname Lindall. Those include: Lindell, Lyndall, Lindale, Lendall, Lindol, Lindahl, Lindal.
Related blog pieces:
Previously, I have posted a couple of blog pieces focused on my paternal side, if you might like to learn more. If so, please see, A 50th Anniversary Celebration: Hiram & Hannah Lindall or My Dad: A Soldier of World War II.
My featured postcard, a Halloween Greeting card, has an undivided back with “Correspondence” printed—referred to as a Pioneer card. It would definitely be published prior to 1907 and may be quite a bit earlier than that.
The card was published by “Whitney Made” the Whitney Valentine Co. (1858-1942) of Worcester, Mass.
The card was sent by M.J. Gray (no idea if any relation to the Gray surname listed in my story above). I think this is Mabel Gray as there are other cards sent from her. The card is postmarked from Providence in 1924 and was sent to Mrs. W. J. Hooper (Aunt Etta) in Plainville, Mass.
Once again, I find myself with the realization that family history records often get confused especially when there are repeated uses of the same names. Even while looking at a few written things for this piece I noticed errors caused by confusion. And for myself, when I first read the history on the Mary Lindall House it looked to me like it was my direct Mary until I re-read the information and took some time to really look at the data. Then it became clear it was her granddaughter. Surely, it is often difficult trying to sort out all the details. So, proceed with caution with any family research and do not be too quick to copy what you find listed and do not jump too quickly to a conclusion.
Until next time…
“A Genealogical Dictionary of The First Settlers of New England, Before 1692” Volume #3, Lindell-Lockhart; By James Savage.
Historic Salem, Inc., “314 Essex Street, Salem, Massachusetts 01970,” House Histories of Salem, accessed October 30, 2020, https://hsihousehistory.omeka.net/items/show/300.
Salemwitchmuseum.com/locations/Jonathan-corwin-house/ Accessed October 31, 2020.