Lighting Ancestral Lamps

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CHAPTER V
Early Forbearers in America

Solomon Bunn/7 in conversation with Charles N. French stated that the emigrant ancestor of the Bunn name was a sailor, and that he came to America in his own ship and was finally lost at sea7. Solomon, however, did not know how many generations back the emigrant grant ancestor existed. This apparently is favorable proof that Matthew was the emigrant ancestor.

Returning to the mooted question as to whether Matthew was kin, to the early Edward, Savage, a recognized genealogical historian, intimates early war that Matthew was a son of Edward, but the name does not appear in Edward's will, nor is there an Edward in Matthew's family or for many following generations. Monnette, Los Angeles, a genealogist of note, states, "There is no record or concrete evidence that Matthew Bunn of Boston and later Woodbridge. N. J. was a son of Edward." Finally he comments, "not proven, but probably." Thus, this writer shall proceed under the assumption that Matthew is the emigrant ancestor of the Bunn family line followed in this book.

Since no death record of Matthew has been located coupled with the establishment fact that he was a mariner, one can assume that he must have been lost at sea. His wife Esther, (called Hester in New Jersey) made indentures in 1680, in regard to one apprenticeship of her son, Nathaniel. At this time she described herself as a widow; however, her dower was not recognized unwilling thereafter which indicates death was presumed. This situation lends favor to the tradition that this first emigrant ancestor was lost at sea.

Matthew and his family probably located in Woodbridge about 1667. Possibly, however, he was there on different occasions a year or two before. It is probably, since he was a mariner, that he became acquainted with the land about New York City through voyages made to that port. At any rate he finally settled at Woodbridge, New Jersey, just west of Staten Island. There, in 1670, he received several grants in that town where he was referred to as "mariner'' of Boston. These grants included a house lot of eleven acres; 120 acres of bottom land on Raritan River; 25 acres of Raritan meadow; another 5 acre meadow tract; and 4 acres additional meadow of Papiack Creek. These locations indicate that these lands are in the present town of Raritan, then part of Woodbridge.

Apparently, John Woodbridge, a minister, born in Wiltshire, England, in 1613, and who had settled at Newbury, Massachusetts, in 1634, led about 30 persons (families) to the vicinity of Woodbridge at the solicitation of Philip Carteret, Governor of the Province and cousin of Sir George Carteret, who with Lord John Berkeley, joint Lords Proprietors. The land was purchases, not taken by force, from Indians in 1664 (probably of the Raritan tribe) by John Boyel, Daniel Denton, Lake Wakin, and others.

Although the charter went into effect immediately after it was granted. It was not until December 7, 1672, that Matthew Bunn, mariner, was among the freeholders supposed to be actual settlers to whom patents were

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