The Hardy Family

“Thomas Hardy . . . was one of the first twelve who planted the settlement of old Ipswich on the Essex shore of New England. He was born in England, and was brother of John Hardy, the only other early settler of Massachusetts Bay colony. Rev. Mr. Perry in his anniversary sermon at Bradford, Massachusetts, said the two brothers John and Thomas Hardy came to this country in the family of Governor John Winthrop as laborers. Not finding business tor them, Winthrop gave them land, at first at Ipswich, but as they did not like the soil there he gave them leave to come te Bradford and furnished them with their patent. Their first house stood just back of David Mardin’s house (in 1820) where the cellar was then visible. This account is rather vague, but interesting.

Thomas Hardy was at Ipswich, April 1, 1633, and was then a proprietor, not a servant. He lived there for some twenty years, a citizen and planter, and about 1653 removed to the neighboring town of
Rowley. Soon afterward he settled at Bradford, where many descendants have lived and are still living. He was one of Major Denison’s subscribers in 1648. His home in Ipswich was a lot near the river adjoining Robert Adams’ and Thomas Howlett’s farms. He was called of Haverhill when he gave land to daughter Mary, wife of Samuel Currier, of Haverhill, Jufy 1, 1670, though his home may have still been Bradford. He made a will at Merrimack village, near Haverhill (Bradford) March 4, 1671-2, with codicil dated December 12, 1677, when he was aged seventy-two years. He was therefore born in 1605. The will was proved March 7, 1677-8, and bequeathed to wife, to sons John, Joseph, Jacob, and William; son-in-law William Hutchins ; daughter Mary and her children. He died January 4, 1678.

His children: 1. Thomas, born Bradford ; married Mercy Tenney, mentioned below. 2. John, made freeman 1676; married Mary, and Marctha . 3. Joseph, born 1642, died January 11, 1726-7, aged eighty- four years ; had son Joseph and others. 4. Jacob, born Bradford; married Lydia ; died November 2, 1713. 5- William, born May 3, 1678; married Ruth Tenney. 6. Daughter, married William Hutchins, perhaps Ann, who was baptized at Rowley, April 26, 1606. 7. Mary, married, 1670, Samuel Currier, of Haverhill.”

By Ellery Bicknell Crane
Published by The Lewis Publishing Company, 1907

“HARDYE, Thomas was one of the twelve who came with John Winthrop,Jr. and commenced the settlement of Agawam March 1632 3, Perry in his Historical Sermon at Bradford speaks of John and William Hardy, brothers who came to New England in the family of Gov Winthrop as laborers to whom the Gov. gave land in Ipswich. In 1636 he had a house lot near the river adjoining Robert Adams and Thomas Howlet. He was one of Major Denison’s subscribers, 1648. Robert Lord in his account book without date, but probably about 1680, charges William Hardy for proving and recording his father’s will and inventory.”

Early Inhabitants of Ipswich,Ma; “THE HAMMATT PAPERS”

“If we stop a moment at the Choate ship­yard, we shall find that Thomas Hardy, once a servant of Gov. Winthrop, has supplanted the first rude shelter by a strong frame house and dug a well; the same old well which gives living waters to-day.”

Historical Sketch: Ipswich, ▬1633-1682.

Interesting Facts:

  • Thomas’ daughter, Mary, married Sammuel Currier, son of Richard Currier, who was also an indentured servant. Richard Currier, like Thomas Hardy of Ipswich, also became a landowner and founding citizen Amesbury, MA.
  • While Thomas Hardy was an indentured servant to Gov. John Winthrop, another ancestor John Howland was indentured to Gov. John Carver of the Plymouth Colony.
  • Ipswich was originally called Agawam.

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