The Plymouth Colony Archive Project

[Go to Biographical ProfilesWillsProbatesSearchArchive]

dividing bar


(son of John Rogers)

Compiled by Jessica Wolpert
University of Virginia
USEM 170, Fall 1998

There are no reliable birth or death dates for Joseph Rogers. Rogers' father, John, is recorded as coming to the Plymouth colony in 1631. There is a record of Joseph Rogers being in Namassakeesett (part of Duxbury) in 1663. In 1675 a Joseph Rogers is listed as being a highway surveyor for Duxbury.

An unspecified amount of land was left to Rogers in his father's will. The land, which lay "on the other side of the Creeke lying easterly," was to be divided between Rogers and his younger brother, Timothy. Rogers' land is mentioned as being next to that of "Nathaneel Bosworth."

In John Rogers' will of February 1660, he names six children: John, Ann, Mary, Abigail, Timothy, and Joseph. Joseph Rogers had married Abigail Barker by 1677- it is uncertain whether he had any children.

Rogers had three documented run-ins with the Plymouth courts. In December of 1657 he is mentioned as being in Arthur Howland's house when the Marshfield constable came to arrest a Quaker known to be within. The constable, John Phillipes, ended up being thrown out of Howland's house. Howland threatened to "have either a sword or a gun in the belly of him." The Quaker, Robert Huchin, got away when Phillipes left the scene for reinforcements. Rogers was mentioned for refusing to help Phillipes when the constable commanded him to bring Huchin out. There is no mentioned punishment.

In the second case, Rogers was not so lucky. This time the trouble was not religion but fornication, or more specifically, adultery. On March 3, 1662/63, he complained against Rebeckah and Alice Peirce for the sum of 20 pounds. The complaint was that they had made "sundry defamations" against him, and more particularly that the two had said that they had seen Rogers and Mercye Tubbs lying under a blanket. The case was dropped after Rogers did not appear when called.

On June 1, 1663, Joseph Rogers was charged with having kept company with Mercye Tubbs in a way so as to raise suspicion of "laciuiouse" behavior between them. As punishment, he had to leave town by the 20th of June, and if caught in Mercye's house or in her company, he was to be whipped. On the same date, he was also fined five pounds for departing the March 3rd court when he was bound to appear.

Rogers' affair didn't end there. On October 5th of the same year, he was presented along with Mercye for lying with her under a blanket in front of a fire. The presentment was found true. He was fined 20 pounds (later released) and an additional 50 shillings. He also was charged to find a surety for his good behavior. Evidently he was not especially concerned by his punishment, as he is noted as owing 2 pounds 50 shillings to the court in June of 1664.


Bosworth, Nathaniel Rogers was willed land adjoining his, 1 February 1660/61

Howland, Arthur Rogers was in his house during Huchin incident, 21 December 1657

Huchin, Robert a Quaker, was in house with Rogers when apprehended, 21 December 1657

Peirce, Alice complained against by Rogers for defamation, 3 March 1662/63

Peirce, Rebeckah complained against by Rogers for defamation, 3 March 1662/63

Phillipes, John constable of Marshfield at time of Huchin incident, 21 December 1657

Tubbs, Mercye



1657 22 December PCR 3: 124-125

In a court inquiry, Joseph Rogers is mentioned as being involved in an incident involving a Quaker at Arthur Howland's house. On the 21st of December, Arthur Howland had thrown the Marshfield constable out of his house when the constable came to arrest Robert Huchin, a Quaker. Rogers had refused to aid John Phillipes, the constable.

1662/63 3 March PCR 7: 107-108

Rogers sues Rebeckah and Alice Peirce for defamation. He wanted the sum of 20 pounds. Rogers "withdrew him selfe" from court though, and so the charges were dropped.

1660/61 1 February PCW&I 1996: 512

In his will, John Rogers Sr. leaves "all my land and meddow that lyeth on the other side of the Creeke lying easterly and this land to bee equally Devided according to quantitie between his sons Joseph and Timothy." He adds that "Josephs land shall lye next to the land of Nathaneel Bosworth".

3 February PCW&I 1996: 513

John Rogers, Sr. dies.

1663 1 June PCR 4: 42

"Joseph Rogers, of Namassakeesett, hath frequently and from time kept company with Mercye, the wife of William Tubbs, in a way and after such manor as hath given cause att least to suspect that there hath bine laciuiouse actes between them." Rogers must leave town by the 20th and stay away from Mercye and her house on pain of whipping. This charge is paired with a fine for Rogers on a related matter. He has to pay five pounds for departing the March court without license.

5 October PCR 7: 112

Rogers "of Mattachese" and Mercye Tubbs are presented for "lying together one night on a bed, under a rugg, before the fire." Mercye was also presented for having "carryed vnseemly in the presence of Josepth Rogers." The presentment was found to be true.

5 October PCR 4: 46-47

Rogers and Mercye Tubbs are each fined 20 pounds (as a surety, as this money is later marked "released.") Rogers is charged to find an additional surety, and fined 50 shillings. This was all for their "absean and laciuous behauior each with each other."

1667 No Specific Date Anderson 1995, 1: 95

By this date, Rogers has married Abigail Barker, youngest daughter to Robert and Luce Barker. Abigail was born ca. 1657.


PCR The Records of the Colony of New Plymouth in New England, edited by Nathaniel B. Shurtleff and David Pulsifer (Boston: William White, 1855-61; New York: AMS Press, 1968). 12 v. in 6.

PCW&I 1996

Plymouth Colony Wills and Inventories, Vol. I: 1633-1669, C.H. Simmons (Ed.), (Rockport, Me: Picton Press, 1996)

Anderson 1995

Anderson, Robert Charles. The Great Migration Begins: Immigrants to New England 1620-1633 (Boston: New England Historic Genealogical Society, 1995). 3v.