Monday, March 21, 2011

Edward Kibbe 1611-1661

Kibbe Genealogical Notes
In the Old Burying Ground by the Congregational Church in Wakefield, Massachusetts, is an ancient stone bearing this inscription:
"Here lyes ye Body
of Edward Keebe
Aged 97 years
Died November
1    1694"

On the left of this grave is that of Hannah Kibbe, a daughter of Edward Kibbe, who died April 28, 1695, aged 32 years.  On his right is buried Mary Hodgman, wife of Thomas, who died November 10, 1735, aged 95.  It is believed she was the eldest daughter of Edward.  Beyond this grave is that of Mary Hay, wife of Peter.  Marriage records of Reading or Redding, Massachusetts, of which this portion of Wakefield was once a part, show this Mary Hay to have been a daughter of James Kibbe, and therefore a grand-daughter of Edward.  Thus it appears that the Edward Kibbe buried at Wakefield is the Edward Kibbe who emigrated to the Boston area sometime around 1645, and set up a sawmill on the Muddy River in what is now Brookline, Massachusetts.

Source materials give the birth date of the emigrating ancestor as May 11, 1611, and his parents as Edward and Deborah (------) Kibbe of Exeter, England.  There is an obvious discrepancy between the birth date and age at death as marked on the gravestone.  Since we have no reason to doubt the parentage and birth record, this mistake may be attributed to the person marking the stone, or to the fact that the elderly tend to forget and add a few years to their age.

The wife of Edward Kibbe is said to have been Mary Partradge or Partridge whom he married in England.  By September, 1645, Boston records show that Mary was affiliated with the church there.  Births, baptisms, and deaths of children born to this couple was given in Boston and Roxbury records.  No death record has been found for Mary (Partridge) Kibbe.  It is probable that Edward did not move to Reading to live near his children until after his wife had died.

That Edward Kibbe was active in community affairs is indicated by some records of his service.  In 1662 he was appointed Clerk of Market, a position created, probably, to give the Muddy River area representation in Boston markets.  From 1666 to 1683 he served intermittently as Surveyor of Highways.  Edward and his wife are listed in 1674 as contributors to the fund for the second meeting house in Roxbury, Massachusetts.
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Kibbe Genealogical Notes on some descendants of Edward Kibbe and his wife, Mary (Partridge) Kibbe, a revised and enlarged edition
compiled and copyrighted by Doreen Potter Hanna, 10 Maple Street, Skowhegan, Maine

Edward Kibbe--New England Colonist
Edward Kibbe is of great interest to me, first of all, because he was my great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great (eight times) grandfather.  Furthermore, he was active as a minor official and thus exerted some influence in the early years of the Massachusetts Bay Colony.  The date of his birth immediately presents a conflict of data.  The Old Burying Ground of the Congregational Church in Wakefield, Massachusetts, contains an ancient stone inscribed (HANNA),
Here lyes ye Body
of Edward Keebe
Aged 97 years
Died November
1      1694

Thus he would have been born around 1597.  However, other sources (HOLMES, STILES, CRLA, SAVAGE, TIMES) give his birth date as May 11, 1611, in Exeter, England.  This difference is not easily reconcilable.  Errors may have occurred in several way; such as, difficulty in reading the old stone, the stone carver's error, or forgetfulness on the part of the subject, as the elderly sometimes add on extra years.  It seems preferable to adopt the May 11, 1611, birth date as valid.  From the above sources we also learn that his death is supposed to have been on April 3, 1693, when he was not quite 82.

At the left of Edward's grave (cited above) is that of a daughter, Hannah.  On his right is buried Mary Hodgman, wife of Thomas, Edward's eldest daughter.  Beyond Mary is the grave of Mary Hay, daughter of son James, and granddaughter of Edward Kibbe.  (HANNA) These graves add credence to the belief that this is the grave of Edward Kibbe in whom we are interested.  But, there is further conflict over the date of death.  SAVAGE state that his widow, Grizzle, had administration of his estate 15 August 1661.  It seems, however, that Grissell Fletcher was the wife of Henry Kibby (possibly brother of Edward) who died 10 August 1661.  Coupled with the fact that Edward's daughter Hannah was born in 1663 (HANNA), we will assume that 1661 is incorrect for Edward's date of death.

The parents of Edward Kibbe were Edward and Deborah (---------) Kibbe of Exeter, Devonshire, according to the various sources already cited.  While in England Edward married Mary Partridge in June 1639 in Exeter.  They emigrated to Massachusetts by 1643, when Edward was a resident of Boston, a sawyer, living at "Muddy River."  Two sources (TREE, SAVAGE) state that Edward Kibbe came from England in 1639 and one (STILES) that he came in 1640.  On November 29, 1645, Mary (Partridge) Kibbe joined the First Church of Boston (CRLA).  Both Roxbury and Boston records include births, baptisms, and deaths of the couple's children.  Roxbury is now part of greater Boston.  Mary (Paertridge) Kibbe lived until at least 1674, and probably some years later, but no death record for her had been found (HANNA).

The records show that Edward Kibbe was active in community affairs.  In 1662 he was appointed Clerk of Market, a position which probably gave the Muddy River area representation in Boston markets.  He served intermittently as surveyor of highways between 1666-1683.  In 1674 Edward and his wife were listed as contributors to the second meeting house in Roxbury, Massachusetts.  It is suggested (HANNA) that after his wife's death, Edward removed to Reading, Massachusetts, to live near some of his children.  Reading is in Middlesex County, north of Boston and near Wakefield.
Pages 1-2
Edward Kibbe--New England Colonist and Ephraim Kibbey Frontiersman
Compiled by George R. Griffiths, August 1991

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