Welcome to the Place Family History

Origins

The oldest line of descent in the Place family tree dates to about 1560, with Peter Plaise in Kirk Ella, Yorkshire, England.   Peter's son was Thomas Place, who was born 12 Apr 1585.

(wikipedia.org) Kirk Ella is a village in the East Riding of Yorkshire, England and is located around five miles west of the city of Kingston upon Hull. Together with West Ella it forms the civil parish of Kirk Ella and West Ella.  Kirk Ella is surrounded to the east by the neighboring villages of Willerby and Anlaby, to the north also by Willerby, and to the west by West Ella and Swanland. To the south lie a few miles of agricultural land, before the town of Hessle.

Thomas Place married Dionis Lyllewhite in Drypool, Yorkshire, England, on May 29, 1614 (note the similarity between the name, Dionis, and the name, Dinah). Thomas had four children that we know of, all christened in Drypool, Yorkshire: By his first wife, Emett, he had. Susanna - 28 Aug 1608, Elsabeth - 3 Feb 1610, and Frances - 13 Apr 1614. Emett died and was buried on 22 April, 1614, followed a few days later by Frances, who was buried on April 29. Thomas married Dionis the following month (more than likely to take care of the other two daughters) and by Dionis had Peter, who was christened on 1 Mar 1615. It would be reasonable to expect Dionis to have had a number of children over the course of the next several years and we see no reason why Enoch should not have been one of them.

Thomas's son, Enoch, according to one story, came to America "with his guardian, Major Humphrey Atherton." Major Atherton is generally believed to have come to America on the "James" with the Rev. Richard Mather. The "James"-- which arrived on 17 August 1635, according to James Savage — was one of 17 ships that sailed to Massachusetts that summer from Bristol, England. 

Sailing the Atlantic was a dangerous thing to do in those days. It was especially dangerous from June 1 through the end of October -- hurricane season -- and the sailing route from Old England to New England ran south to the Canary Islands, then west to the Bahamas, and then north with the Gulf Stream.

Rev. Richard Mather documented the tumultuous voyage of the James in 1635 in his diary.   A sister ship, the Angel Gabriel, traveling with the James was lost when a hurricane struck the New England coastline.  Boston itself suffered high tides of twenty feet and there are stories of the Narragansett Indians climbing to the tops of trees to survive.  Many failed to do so and were swallowed by the surging waters ... " {Perley].  On 17 August 1635, the James manages to make it to Boston Harbor proper with "... her sails rent in sunder and spit in pieces, as if they had been rotten rags..." [Mather].

 

 

Mather summed up his trip with "On June 2 we lost sight of our old English coast, until August 8 where we made land again at Menhiggin, it was but six weeks and five days yet from our first entering the ship in King road on May 23 to our landing in Boston on August 17, it was 12 weeks and 2 days. For we lay at anchor in King Roade 11 days before we even set sail and 3 days at Lundy and 12 days at Milford and spent 3 days tacking between Kind Roade and Lundy, one day between Lundy and Milford and 8 days between Menhiggin and Boston. Again, let our gracious God be blessed forever. Amen..." [Mather]

While some families came in one boat, most seem to have split up. One family sent their four children on four different boats that year and the parents came on a fifth. If our various guesses or conclusions are correct, the Atherton, Mather, and Place families were acquainted before they sailed for America. Humphrey Atherton may well have been Enoch's guardian for the voyage, and Thomas Place may well have been guardian to Timothy Mather and one of Atherton's sons.   While we have little to support our theory, we believe that Enoch's father was the Thomas Place who was accepted as a freeman in Cambridge on 13 May 1639 (Savage says 13 May 1640) and in Dorchester on 28 Feb 1642. The Dinah Place, "a widow," who died in Dorchester on 28 July 1657, the year that Enoch and Sarah were married there, was probably Thomas' widow.

We believe that Enoch Place was a son of Thomas and Dinah Place, and that they came to America on a different ship that same year. Furthermore, as will also be explained later, we feel certain that Peter Place, who came on the "Truelove", was a son of Thomas and Dinah. The "Truelove," which sailed from London in September 1635 with her master John Gibbs, was the last of the 17 ships to leave England that summer, and arrived in Massachusetts Bay (the passenger count was listed as 66).  Peter was 20 years old.

Some researchers show her as Sarah Mumford (I guess they are talking Enoch's wife). There is no record of a Mumford family in Dorchester while Enoch was there, but Enoch's friend, Thomas Mumford (see below), married Sarah Odding, widow of Phillip Sherman of Roxbury, ca. 1656. Thomas Mumford had a daughter named Sarah, but she was not born until 1668 (she married Benedict Arnold). The first record we have of Thomas Mumford is in Portsmouth, RI, in 1657 (the year Enoch and Sarah were married). Thomas was one of the original purchasers of the Pettaquamscutt land.  

It is almost certain that the Peter Place of Dorchester and Boston who came to Boston at age 20 aboard the ship, "Truelove" was the oldest son of Truman and Dionis / Dinah. He would have been born in 1615. Besides this coincidence of dates there is the coincidence of names. For one thing, the name, Peter, was extremely rare among the Place families of England An on-line search of LDS ancestral file and IGI file records returned 9 records for Peter, 44 for Thomas, 47 for William, and 61 for John. Then there is the record of the christening of a Thomas Plaise, son of Peter Plaise, in Kirk Ella, Yorkshire, England, on April 12, 1585. Thomas would have been 23 in 1608, when Susanna was born. Drypool was a parish in the port city of Hull and Kirk Ella is a village about 5
miles to the west.

If we are right, Peter would have been Enoch's older brother, as we have said. There can be little doubt that they were related. For one thing, Enoch's son, Joseph, married Peter's granddaughter, Joanna, on Nov. 9, 1698. Researchers also point out the similarity in some of the names that Peter and Enoch gave their children. Peter and his wife, Alice, had children named Hannah, Elizabeth (who died young), Joseph, John, Peter, another Elizabeth, and Sarah. Enoch had children named Enoch, Peter, Thomas, Joseph, and Sarah. Peter resided in Dorchester in 1642 and 1644 when his first two children, Hannah and Elizabeth, were born and in 1646, when he was accepted as a Freeman (6 May 1646). Peter probably moved to Boston shortly thereafter, for his remaining children were baptized in the First Church of Boston. At any rate, we know that Peter's land in Boston abutted that of Samuel Cole, whose granddaughter, Hannah, married Enoch's son, Thomas.

The fact that Enoch named a son, Peter, is of less significance than the fact that he named a son, Thomas. While it was not always followed, the common naming pattern among the Puritans of Massachusetts was to name the first son for his father, followed by his maternal and then paternal grandfathers, with a similar pattern for naming daughters; hence, Enoch and Sarah for the first-born son and daughter. Peter may have been the name of Sarah's father and Thomas, Enoch's.

Our main argument for Enoch's having been a child of Thomas and Dinah was Enoch's apparent wealth, as evidenced by his purchase of land in Rhode Island at the age of 29. One logical explanation is that he inherited it with the death of Dinah.  Sarah's maiden surname will always be a mystery (ed. Note.. later research indicates Sarah was Sarah Mumford, who was born in 1632 and died in 1695; Mumford is a very common name in the Kingston area, and Enoch’s association with Thomas Mumford is documented in this story.  So we would believe that Thomas Mumford was Enoch’s brother-in-law). However, the lack of a surname could be a sign that she was a servant, possibly of Major Atherton's. "Servant" was, of course, the short form of "indentured servant." We can imagine Enoch's buying her freedom with part of his inheritance and promptly marrying her.

The first record we have of Enoch (1) Place is that of his marriage. According to the New England Historical & Genealogical Society Register (11/332), Enoch was married by Major Atherton to Sarah [____] on 5-9-1657 (Dorchester Marriages). Their first son, Enoch (2) was born in Dorchester on 18-7-1658 and their second, Peter (2) in Dorchester on 16-12-1660. These dates should be read (for instance) "on the 5th day of the 9th month. At that time, March 1 was considered as New Year's Day, so Enoch's marriage date would have been 5 November 1657 and the other dates should be advanced two months, as well.

Whether or not our assumptions about Thomas are correct, it is clear that Enoch was close to both the Mather and Atherton families. 

About 1660, Enoch and his family moved to Rhode Island and settled on land in the Pettaquamscutt Purchase, of which Major Atherton was one of the purchasers. The Pettaquamscutt Purchase, signed in 1657 at Treaty Rock by the Narragansett sachems Quassaquanch, Kachanaquant and Quequaquenuet, opened for settlement some of the richest farmland in New England (cleared by the Indians). For decades, the Massachusetts Bay, Plymouth and Connecticut colonies tried to poach it from Rhode Island. And in King Philip's War (1675-76), its original inhabitants fought in vain to keep their land.  The group purchased from Narragansett sachems a tract of land about twelve square miles in size for the sum of 16 Pounds [1].  The Pettaquamscutt Purchasers allotted the land among themselves and a few other men.  This area became known as Kings Town and later as Kingstown. It is difficult to determine just where Enoch's farm was located but it was evidently near what is now known as Wickford, RI, a short distance west of the Wickford to Narragansett Pier Road near the village of Hamilton, described in Enoch's will as "a dwelling house and 100 acres about one half mile west of Sugar House Hill." It is said that Sugar House Hill, a name no longer used, is a small hill near the main road, a little north of Hamilton and about one mile south of Wickford.

While we do not know how much land Enoch purchased or what he paid for it, one has to wonder where a 31-year-old young man would have accumulated the kind of funds involved. One obvious source would have been through an inheritance. Thomas was obviously a man of substance - one of the requirements for acceptance as a Freeman. Another was membership in "the church" - and again, only men of substance were considered for this. Furthermore, only men of substance were able to afford the costs involved in bringing a family to America. So Thomas would have had a substantial estate when he died. While a will has not been found, it is assumed that he willed his entire estate to his wife (and we assume that this was the Dinah Place who died in Dorchester in 1657) and that this passed to Peter and Enoch and, possibly, a sister or sisters, following Dinah's death.

The first record of Enoch in Rhode Island is dated July 3, 1663, at Kings Town, when he and others of Narragansett indicated their preference to be under the protection of Connecticut. Major Atherton and others (including Thomas Mumford) had obtained land at Pettaquamscutt from the Narragansett Indians (Jan 20, 1658). At a meeting held on July 2, 1663, (moderated by Major Atherton) it was decided that it would be up to the people to decide which colony they wanted to align with--Massachusetts, Rhode Island, or Connecticut. Enoch and others apparently preferred to cast their lots with Connecticut. (Rhode Island, at that time, was literally an island--originally, Aquidneck Island--on the other side of Narragansett Bay). One of the concerns was certainly a question of which political entity could best provide security from Indian raids.

The next record of him is dated May 5, 1664, when he and Thomas Mumford were released from prison. The Records of the Colony of Rhode Island, and Providence Plantations, read as follows: "Vpon consideration which of the prisonors shall be called first: ordered, That Thomas Mumford shall be first heard. Vpon consideration and debate about Thomas Mumford and Enock Playce concearning ther release or continuance in bonds: it is ordered, That they shall be bound in the sume of one hundred pounds apiece, to be lyable to come forth vpon all occationes when duely called for, to speake farther to the matter concearning Timothy Mather, whome they accuse for speaking words of a very dishonerable natuer against his Majestye; and the court see cause to enlarge them from prison in consideration of the voluntary, though somewhat late information consearning the sayd Timothy Mather's expressiones, concieving that want of knowledge what to doe (as they aleadge), was the true cause of ther neglect in the premises." (Timothy Mather was a son of the Rev. Richard Mather and was Major Atherton's son-in-law. Thomas Mumford would later be an overseer of Enoch's will.)

For reasons unknown, Enoch tried to return to Dorchester in 1668.  The Dorchester Town Records, Volume 4, Page 156, state:.."At a meeting of the selectmen on 8 (12)1668. The same day a letter was presented to the selectmen from Enoch Place for his reseption into the Towne as an inhabitant again but the selectmen saw no reason to grant it". The events described in the previous paragraph may have had a lot to do with the selectmen's decision.  The next record of Enoch is found in the same Records Of The Colony of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations, on May 18th, 1671, when the General Court met at Pettaquomscott.:   "The inhabitants being present, the court was called; after which the commission from the Generall Assembly for holding this Court, his Majesties most gracious Charter and letters; as also the Commissioners orders were publickly read, after which the inhabitants, viz: Mr. Jireh Bull, Mr. Samuell Wilson, Mr. John Porter, Tho. Mumford, John Tift, William Hefernan, Rouse Holmes, James Eldridge, Samuell Albro, Ben. Gardiner, Henry Gardiner, George Gardiner, Nicholas Gardiner, George Palmer, Stephen Northup, Wm. Aires, George Crofts, Enoch Plaice, and Christopher Holmes, did give their engagements for their allegiance to his Majestie, and fidelity to this Colony."

Enoch's date of death is not recorded. His will, dated May 31, 1695, was proved on September 11, 1695: Exx. wife Sarah. Overseers, Thomas Mumford and Josiah Arnold. He calls himself aged sixty-four years. "To wife Sarah, whole estate, real and personal, for life, for support in old age. To youngest son Joseph, at decease of wife, my dwelling house and 100 acres, about half a mile west of Sugar House Hill, and he then to be executor. If Joseph die without issue, the said house and land to go to the eldest of the male heirs of the Places of my issue. All movables in wife's possession at her death to go equally to sons and daughters, viz: Enoch, Peter, Thomas and Joseph Place and Sarah Cook. Inventory, £17, 19s, viz: cow, heifer, 2 yearlings, calf, 4 sheep, 2 or 3 lambs, pewter, iron, etc."

 

Joseph Place (1665-1730/31)

Joseph Place married Joannah (Born in 1679/80 in Suffolk, Massachusetts).  Joseph seemed to take possession of the farm, as on Mar. 17, 1716/7, Joseph Place and wife Joanna deeded to Daniel McCoon (the second husband of Sarah Place Cook) 100 acres, reserving 3 rods square "where father Enoch Place is buried."   This farm was located about 1 mile west of what is now known as Wickford, RI.

 

John Place (1698/99 – 1754)

John Place born 09 Jan 1698/99 in Kingstown, Rhode Island and died 14 Nov 1754 in Glocester, Providence, RI.  He married Dinah (last name unknown) b 10 Feb 1696/97 in Providence RI and died 1769 in Gloucester, RI.

 

John Albro Place (1726 – 1812)

John Albro Place was born in Glocester, RI in 1726 and migrated to Pennsylvania.  He had four spouses; Elizabeth Gross (1732-1769, born in Orange County, NY; Grace Kitchell (b 1741 in Morris NJ, d 1818 in Cincinnati, Ohio), Riggs (birth and death unknown) and Elizabeth Gross (b 1732 in Orange, NY, died 1769).   Ten children were James, Pelig, John Albro Place, Jr, Philip, Ruben, Asel, Dorcas, Phobe, Isaac, and Arca (by Grace Kitchell in 1766).

John died in Middle Smithfield, (Monroe County) PA on 26 Mar 1812. 

 

William Place (1783-1841)

William Place was born in Middlefield township  Monroe county, son of Joseph Place, a native of Rhode Island.. He married Lena Myers, and to this union were born children as follows: Betsey, deceased, who was the wife of Benjamin Stemples, of Wyoming county, Penn.; Mary, deceased, wife of Peter Butts, of Wyoming county; Eleanor, deceased, who married and lived in Wyoming county; George. . .;Sarah, wife of David Dewitt, of Bradford county, Penn.; John, a farmer of Middle Smithfield township, Monroe county; Charles, living on the old home farm in Wyoming county; Hannah, widow of Dorey Evans, of Mehoopany, Penn.; Baker, deceased, who was a farmer of Wyoming county; and William, of Mehoopany, who is engaged in farming. . . . both died in  Wyoming County, where they lived for about twenty years. Mr. Place followed milling for several years, but his principal business was farming, in which he was unusually successful, at the time of his death owning 260 acres, nearly all improved land. He was a Democrat in political faith. Mrs. Place was a member of the M. E. Church. 

A news report from the South Auburn New Independent Republican dated April 24, 1886 stated Republican - Sixty-three years ago the 15th of April, the family of Wm. Place moved from Monroe Co., to take up their abode near what is now Tunkhannock. Railroads were then a rarity and money a scarcity. They came in a company consisting of Mr. Place and wife with 8 children; 4 loads of goods, 9 horses, and 6 cattle. The journey was long and tedious, taking nearly 4 days. Those 8 children, grown to manhood and womanhood, have settled in the surrounding country. George Place being one of them remembers well his pioneer life.

 

George Place (1815-1900)

George Place was born in Middle Smithfield Township in Monroe, PA on 27 Sep 1815, and died 18 Jan 1900.  He married Sarah Elizabeth Risley (note that his grandson, Ralph Lindley Place, also married a Risley, who was a distant cousin through this marriage).   Sarah Elizabeth was born 26 Apr 1836 in Springfield, PA, and died on 07 Sep 1898 in South Auburn, Susquehanna County, PA.  They had four children; Lindley Tower Place born 20 Mar 1873 in South Auburn, PA; John (b 1868), William (b 1868), and Flora (b 1870).  John and William were twins.  They were married in the Methodist Episcopal Church at Skinner’s Eddy  on 15 Aug 1866.

George had two other spouses reported, Mary Polly Jayne (m 1836) and Sarah Elizabeth Ford Luce (1843).  Children by Mary Polly Jayne were Mary Jayne (b 1837), Emeline (b 1839), and Charles (b 1841).  Children by Sarah Elizabeth Ford Luce were Anna (b 1844), Amanda (b 1846), Margaret (b 1848), Rebecca (b 1850), Harrison (b 1851), George N. (b 1854), Lilly (b 1857), Theodore Ross (b 1859), and Franklin (b 1861).  Elizabeth Ford died in 1845, Sarah died in 1863.

George purchased property in Wyoming, PA on 17 Feb 1846, likely after his marriage to Sarah Elizabeth Risley.  He is buried in Jersey Hill Cemetery in Auburn Township in Susquehanna, PA.

 

Lindley Tower Place (1873-1942)

Lindley Tower Place was born on 27 Sep 1815 to a large family in 20 Mar 1873, the youngest of four born of the George Place and Sarah Elizabeth Risley marriage.  He died on 5 Feb 1942 in Dimock Township, Susquehanna County, PA.   They had a single son, Ralph Lindley Place b 1900.

He married Mary Leona Swackhammer b 10 Feb 1865 in West Auburn, PA, and d 01 Nov 1956 in Dimock Township, PA.   Their marriage announcement was dated 09 Aug 1898 .. “Mr. Lindley T. Place, of South Auburn, and Miss Leona Swackhammer were united in marriage at the home of the bride in West Auburn on Thursday, August 18, 1898.  The ceremony was performed by Rev. J. S. Custard in the presence of only a few immediate relatives at 2 o'clock p. m., after which a sumptuous dinner was served.  The bridal party left for Montrose and will also visit friends at Binghamton and other places before their return.”

Lindley Tower, like his ancestors before him, was a farmer.  A story reported on March 8, 1901 in the Auburn Corners stated .. Blue birds and robins have made their appearance. South Auburn - L.T. Place has 60 fine young chicks hatched in his new Cyphers incubator: invention has gone so far there is nothing left for the old hen to do only scratch up the gardens and lay 365 eggs per year.

Another local newspaper in South Auburn dated July 10, 1902 stated .. L.T. Place drove back in his field and as the woodchucks are rather thick he took his gun along. Arriving at the field he saw one of the animals and thinking he could take a good aim from his wagon he stood up and fired. The report of the gun frightened his horse and Mr. Place was thrown violently to the ground, striking on his head and shoulder, leaving him unconscious for some time. Finally gaining consciousness Mr. Place managed to get to the house. Dr. Harrison was summoned at once and reported no bones broken, but badly bruised.”

Lindley Tower was named for two old names from Rhode Island.  In the town of Wickford, RI, there are two roads seemingly named for the same .. Lindley Avenue and Tower Hill Road.   The Lindley name carried through his son Ralph Lindley Place, and his great grandson Alan Lindley Beard.

 

Ralph Lindley Place (1900-1979)

Ralph Lindley Place was born 09 Feb 1900 in Auburn Township, Susquehanna County, PA; and died 29 Aug 1979 in Crystal Beach, Florida.  He married Vivian Eliza Risley, who was a distant cousin through his grandfather George Place (who married Sarah Elizabeth Risley).   Vivian was born on 28 Apr 1901 in Dimock Township, PA, and died in 02 Jan 1989, in Tyrone, PA.  They were married on 02 Sep 1922, in Broome, NY.

They had two children, Shirley Elaine Place b 06 Jun 1926 and Angeline Leona Place b 20 Jun 1923, both born in Dimock Township, Susquehanna County, PA.

An only child, Ralph Lindley Place had several occupations during his life, including a Farmer, a builder and painter, a Penn Dot worker, and a Creamery Worker.  He was an avid fisherman, and lived on a lake in Susquehanna County (Scholey Pond) and a home in Florida at Crystal Beach during his retirement years.

Vivian and Ralph celebrated their 50th Wedding Anniversary in 1972 in South Auburn, PA.

His memorial service was held at Masonic Service held on August 31, 1979 at 8:00 p.m. by Franklin Lodge  No. 263, F. & A. M.  at Sheldon Funeral Home, Tunkhannock, Wyoming, Pa.  The funeral service was conducted by Rev. Reuben Judson on September 1, 1979.

 

[1] A History of Kingston, RI, 1700-1900 Heart of Rural South County; by Christian M. McBurney.