Genealogical and Family History
STATE OF MAINE
Compiled under the editorial supervision of George Thomas Little, A. M., Litt. D.
LEWIS HISTORICAL PUBLISHING COMPANY
[Please see Index page for full citation.]
[Transcribed by Coralynn Brown]
[Many families included in these genealogical records had their beginnings in Massachusetts.]
The name of Boyd is not only one of the most ancient in this country, but it can claim one of the longest and most romantic genealogies in Scotland. The family trace their descent from a younger son of the illustrious lord high steward of Scotland.
Robert, son of Simon, who was third son of Alan, the second lord high steward, was of a very fair complexion, and received the surname Boyt or Boyd, from the Gaelic, meaning fair. From this Robert Boyt, or Boyd, who died in 1240, all the Boyds of Scotland are descended. Some families claim that the original spelling of the word was Boit.
The first Robert had a son, Sir Robertus de Boyd, who died in 1270. The latter's son, the third Sir Robert Boyd, was one of the barons who were forced to swear fealty to King Edward I of England in 1296. The following year this Sir Robert joined Sir William Wallace, but died soon after. His son, the fourth Sir Robert Boyd, was one of the most gallant and able friends of Robert Bruce, and was by that king made Lord of Kilmarnock and covered with honors. His descendants have been traced in the male line down to the year 1800, and stand high among the dignitaries of old Scotland. Some of the younger sons have from time to time emigrated to Ireland, and thence to America. While in Ireland they kept clear of the natives.
William Boyd, of Foxborugh, Mass., who was born in Newtownards, Ireland, in 1800, tells us that his grandmother would call out to the bairns in the street when the native Irish came alon: "Came in, an' stay in till them folks hae gane awa,' for they're Eerish oot there an' ye maunna gang near them."
One of the brave American pioneers of the name was Captain William Boyd, a man of notable courage and force, who came to Londonderry, New Hampshire, among the early settlers of the town, though not till after its founding in 1719. Eight men by the name of Boyd appear on the memorial to Governor Shute, March 26, 1718, asking encouragement to obtain land in "that very excellent and renowned Plantation" called New England. Capt. Boyd came over the water fourteen times, bringing Scotch (Scottish!! Scotch is a drink!) emigrants from Ireland to this country.
Bristol, Maine, is another place where numerous Boyds gathered in early times. Some of them seem to have come directly from Ireland, and some, who emigarted a little earlier, were born in Massachusetts. Deacon William Boyd, born at Worcester, Mass., July 30, 1745, moved to Bristol, Maine, in 1763, where he became shipwright and farmer. He is said to have built the first vessel ever launched on the Penobscot, above the bay. He subsequently moved to Bangor, where he pursued ship-building, and where he died in 1829.
Deacon Boyd had four brothers older than himself: Samuel, John, Andrew and James; and two younger, Thomas and Joseph. It is known that Thomas Boyd lived at Bristol, where he was a coroner and magistrate. He may have been the Thomas Boyd whose name is one of three committeemen signed to an address to the provincial congress at Massachusetts Bay, May 2, 1775. James Boyd was chosen one of the selectmen and assessors for Bristol at the first annual town meeting, held in 1766. That the name of Boyd was a common one in Bristol in early times is shown by the fact that no less than three, Thomas, Samuel and John Boyd, are signed to a "decent" (dissent) against building three meeting-houses in the township in the year 1768.
(I) Samuel Boyd, a native of Ireland, was born previously to 1732, came to Bristol, Maine, about the middle of the eighteenth century, and lived and died there. About all we can judge of his early circumstances is derived from the statement of his brother in the old family Bible: "Thomas Boyd it is my name and I was Born in the Kingdom of Ireland and County of Antrim and Parish of Dunl___ and the town of Bu__foot and I left my Native Country in the 18 year of my age and came to this Country and I have lived in New England 35 years which is 53 years witness my hand. Thos. Boyd." Under this statement is the entry of his birth, Dec. 28, 1732,, his marriage in 1758; and on another page his death, Aug. 27, 1792. These statements enbale us to make approximate estimates in regard to his brother Samuel.
In 1758 six hundred men were recruited for the army in the district of Maine, and three hundred of these were assigned to garrison duty, and stationed at the various forts and block-houses. Fifteen were assigned to Fort Frederic, and among this number we find the name of Samuel Boyd, of Bristol.
Samuel Boyd was married in Ireland, but the name of his wife is unknown; and of his children we have record of only one, Thomas, whose sketch follows.
(II) Thomas, son of Samuel Boyd, was born in Ireland, Jan. 28, 1748, and came to America with his parents and uncles in 1750. He was called the surveyor or junior to distinguish him from his uncle and cousin of the same Christian name. He lived at Bristol, Maine, in early life, but moved to Boothbay before 1770, and died there June 9, 1803. Upon coming to Boothbay he engaged as clerk and bookkeeper for David Reed. Soon after he exchanged his farm in Bristol for one at the Back Narrows, where he settled and became a neighbor to his uncles, Thomas and George.
Thomas Boyd was a good penman, an accurate accountant and the principal land surveyor in the region.
On March 8, 1770, he married Catherine, daughter of Robert Wylie, of Boothbay; she died in 1826.
1. Martha, born May 27, 1771, married Adam Boyd.
2. Jane, married Michael Campbell.
3. Esther, married James Murray.
4. Katherine, married Alexander Reed.
5. Alexander, mentioned below.
6. Sarah, married Samuel Murray.
7. Elizabeth, married Joseph Emerson.
8. Charlotte, married William Montgomery.
9. Andrew, born Jan. 1, 1791.
10. Thomas, married Abigail Webber, of Edgecomb.
11. Samuel, born Aug. 19, 1794, married Sarah Bryer.
(III) Alexander, eldest son of Thomas and Catherine (Wylie) Boyd, was born at Boothbay, Maine, Aug. 16, 1781, died June 11, 1863. He spent his life on the old homestead. About 1816 he married Susan Walker, who died Dec. 24, 1852.
1. Lucy M., born June 29, 1818, married Moses Hersey.
2. Andrew, whose sketch follows.
3. William Maxwell, born Aug. 6, 1822, unmarried.
4. Susan, born March 8, 1828, married Martin Brewer.
5. Jackson, born Oct. 24, 1830, settled in Nova Scotia.
(IV) Andrew, eldest son of Alexander and Susan (Walker) Boyd, was born May 16, 1820, at Boothbay, Maine. For many years he was engaged in the West India trade. He was twice married; first, to Rachel M., daughter of George and Rachel Sproule, of Bristol; and second, in 1862, to Bethia C. Richards, of Bristol.
1. George A., married Sarah Elliott.
2. Mary A., married Orin Dodge.
3. Charles M., married Edith E. Dodge.
4. Eldora A., mentioned below.
5. Susie E., married Leon Blake.
6. Lottie F.
7. Hattie H.
(V) Eldora A., daughter of Andrew Boyd and his second wife, Bethia C. (Richards) Boyd, was born at Boothbay, maine, and was married to Fred H. Harris, of Boothbay Harbor.