Genealogical and Family History
of the

Compiled under the editorial supervision of George Thomas Little, A. M., Litt. D.

New York

[Please see Index page for full citation.]

[Transcribed by Coralynn Brown]

[Many families included in these genealogical records had their beginnings in Massachusetts.]


The Ridley family is of very ancient origin. Sieur de Ridel, whose name appears on the roll of Battle Abbey, the earliest record of the Normans who came with William the Conqueror, is said to have been the ancestor of all branches of the family which subsequently settled in England and Scotland. The surname appears on the Domesday Book in a variety of forms, such as Ridel, Ridle and Ridell. The name is supposed to be a place name from a place in Scandinavia called Rugdal, that is Ryedale, the valley of Rye. Members of this Norman family settled in Yorkshire, England, and named their landed possessions Ryedale. There are about sixty variations of spelling, among the most common being Ridell, Ridle, Ridlon and Ridley. The family has many coats-of-arms, borne by different branches.

(I) Magnus Redlon, or Ridley, was born in Shetland, on the north coast of Scotland, in 1698. Tradition says that he was impressed into the service of the British navy, and deserted when the ship landed at York, Maine, in 1717. He married at York, in 1720, Susanna Austin, born Nov. 23, 1701, died 1730, widow of Ichabod Austin and daughter of Matthew Young. He married (second) Massie, daughter of Abraham Townsend. He purchased in 1719 a tract of land in York, twenty-two acres lying between the Saw Mill and Fall Mill brooks. He was called laborer and yeoman. On Feb. 11, 1728, he and his wife Susanna sold this land to Jedediah Preble, and removed to Biddeford, where he bought land and built a house. After the death of his first wife he sold this property to Amos Whitney, Sept. 22, 1730, including the movable goods in the house, which stood on the east side of the Saco river. He bought from Abraham Townsend, father of his second wife, land in Scarborough, on the north side of Little river, called the Rogers Gore. In 1742 his name appears on a petition respecting the settlement of lands in Narragansett No. 1, now Buxton, Maine, and he was probably a landowener there. He built his house on what was called Rendezvous Point, and it was strongly fortified.
He was a charter member of the first church at Saco, Maine. His will was dated Dec. 10, 1766, and the inventory of the estate was made in 1773. He died in 1772, aged seventy-eight years, and is buried near his own house, with his wives.
Magnus Redlon was a noted scout during the Indian wars along the coast. He furnished many masts, which were shipped to England. It is said that the Indians called him the "white scout with yellow hair."
Children of 1st wife:
1. Susanna, born in York, Maine, March 4, 1721, died aged six weeks.
2. Ebenezer, born York, Feb. 13, 1723, married Aug. 8, 1751, Sarah Young; his descendants have always spelled their name Redlon.
3. John, born York, March 21, 1726, married Oct. 9, 1749, Sarah Brooks.
4. Matthias, born Sept. 19, 1728, mentioned below.
5. Daniel, born York, May 4, 1730, married, 1751, Patience Sands.
Children of 2d wife:
6. Abraham, born Pepperellborough (now Saco) Maine, Aug. 10, 1733, died unmarried in 1798.
7. Jeremiah, born Saco, Nov. 4, 1736, married March 2, 1760, Bethesda Townsned; died June 25, 1816.
8. Jacob, born Saco, May 14, 1740, married in August, 1762, Elizabeth Young; drowned in the Saco river April 26, 1765.

(II) Matthias (1) Redlon (Ridley) son of Magnus Redlon, was born in York, Maine, Sept. 19, 1728. He removed when a child with his parents to Pepperellborough. He settled at Saco Ferry on a part of his father's estate, remaining until 1761, when he removed to Buxton, Maine. He owned here lots 25, 25, 26, 27 and 28 in Range D of the first division of Narragansett No. 1. He recieved a part of the homestead from his father in his will. He sold his land in Buxton March 16, 1786, to Samuel Sacmmon for two hundred and forty pounds. He was living in Little Falls plantation (now Hollis) in 1787. He bought a large farm on the Saco river, and built a small house, where he carried on shoemaking, did lumbering, and kept a small general store. He owned part of a sawmill on Moderation Falls, which he sold July 10, 1795. He then joined with his sons in business in their saw and grist mills, where he worked several years. They made shingles, tubs, pails, etc. He and his sons were employed several weeks of each year in the ship yard of Coffin & Deering at Saco Ferry. The Ridley genealogist says: "He was of medium height, had broad shoulders and a very short, thich neck; his cheek bones were high; nose large and fleshy; mouth and chin broad; upper lip wide and full; hair and beard sandy; eyes gray and deep set; brows thick, long and outstanding; forehead broad, jetting and wrinkled."
He died suddently about 1810, and was buried on a high knoll between the river bank and the estate of Nathaniel Haley, now or lately the pature of Martin Foss.
He married, Dec. 29, 1748, Rachel, daughter of Robert Edgecomb, of Saco. She survived her husband and died, aged over ninety, and was buried by his side.
1. Matthias, born in Saco, Feb. 4, 1749-50, mentioned below.
2. Rachel, born Oct. 10, 1751, married April 29, 1773, Daniel Field; was a pensioner of the revolution; died at the age of ninety-six.
3. James, born Dec. 10, 1753, married Hannah Cozens; died Sept. 12, 1812.
4. Thomas, born Dec. 28, 1755, married Jan. 24, 1799, Martha Merrill; was in the revolution.
5. Mary, born June 2, 1758, burned to death in the house of James Edgecomb, April 10, 1767.
6. John, born Nov. 11, 1760, married Dec. 15, 1779, Abigail Holmes; died in 1866, aged one hundred and six years three months; soldier in the revolution.
7. Abraham, born Sept. 21, 1763, married Aug. 23, 1786, Patience Tibbetts; died Oct. 9, 1852.
8. Judith, born Sept. 21, 1763 (twin); married Nov. 29, 1787, Nathaniel Townsend.
9. Jacob, born May 12, 1766, married Dec. 19, 1793, Mary Townsend; died Dec., 1817.
10. Magnus, born Buxton, Maine, Oct. 3, 1769, married Feb. 21, 1793, Eleanor MacArthur; died 1852.
11. Sarah, born March 26, 1772, married Aug. 19, 1797, Nathaniel Woodman.
12. Hannah, born April 4, 1775, married Nov. 14, 1799, Magnus Redlon, her second cousin; died 1817.

(III) Matthias (2) Redlon (or Ridley), son of Matthias (1) Redlon, was born in Saco, Maine, Feb. 4, 1749-50, died in 1840. He settled on a part of the homestead at Saco, about a half mile north of the road corner at the homestead belonging to Lewis McKinney. He was in the revolution, a corporal in Captain Jeremiah Hill's company, Colonel James Scammon's regiment, the Thirtieth Regiment of the Massachusetts Foot Guards. he was in Arnold's expedition to Quebec; enlisted May 3, 1775, and was in the expedition to Ticonderoga and Crown Point. He sold his lands at Saco and Buxton about 1812 and removed to Wayne, Maine, where his sons had settled. He died in Turner, Maine, at the home of his daughter, and was buried in the family cemetery at Wayne, near the brick house built by his grandson, Daniel Ridley.
In all the Saco records his name is spelled Redlon, but his gravestone is marked Ridley. His children in Wayne changed their name to Ridley, but twol sons who settled in Hollis, Maine, and Clarendon, Vermont, still retained the original spelling.
He married (first) Sept. 6, 1772, by Rev. John Fairfield, Elizabeth, daughter of Daniel Field, of Buxton. He married (second) Dorcas (Carter) Williams, widow.
Children of 1st wife, b. in Saco:
1. Daniel, born April 4, 1773, mentioned below.
2. Samuel, born Aug. 22, 1774, married Aug. 23, 1804, Polly Ridlon, his cousin.
3. Jonathan Fields, born Sept. 15, 1776.
4. Dorcas, born Nov. 2, 1777, married Feb. 11, 1811, Samuel Leavitt.
5. John, born Sept. 12, 1779.
6. Patience, born June 10, 1785, married Nov. 10, 1816, Benjamin Libbey; died 1867.
Children of 2d wife:
7. Betsey, born May 28, 1789, married David Creach; married (second) Benjamin Young.
8. David, born April 20, 1791, died Oct. 3, 1846.
9. Mary, born Aug. 3, 1794, married Alvin Swift.
10. Sally, born May 28, 1798, married Billings Hood; died June 3, 1873.
11. Rachel, born Sept. 28, 1801, married Nov. 27, 1821, Otis Hood; died June 3, 1864.
12. Lydia (twin), born Sept. 38, 1801, married Daniel True; died Feb. 6, 1875.

(IV) Deacon Daniel (1) Redlon (Ridley), son of Matthias (2) Redlon, was born in Saco, Maine, April 4, 1773. He settled on a farm adjoining that of his father. Some time after 1800 he sold his Saco farm and removed to Wayne, Maine, then changing his name to Ridley. He was a deacon of the Free Will Baptist church. He died at Wayne and was buried near his residence. He was above medium height, broad-shouldered and compactly built. He had the quick-tempered nature of the Redlons.
He married (first) ____ Williams, daughter of his father's second wife. He married (second) June 2, 1822, Mary McKenney, of Saco, who died in 1872 at an advanced age. She was blind several years.
Children, all by 1st wife:
1. Sally, born Nov. 30, 1793, married Feb. 27, 1812, Benjamin McKenney.
2. Matthias, born Feb. 28, 1795, married Feb. 4, 1818, Nancy Pratt; died 1875.
3. Martha, born Feb. 9, 1798, died young.
4. Jonathan, born Feb. 15, 1801, married Louisa Marston.
5. Daniel, born Sept. 27, 1801, mentioned below.
6. Captain Benjamin, born June 20, 1804, married Eliza Jenkins; married (second) Abiah _____.
7. Pelina, born March 7, 1807, married 1827, Charles Graves.
8. Mary, born April 4, 1809, married Naaman Bishop.
9. Betsey, born Aug. 20, 1811, married Hamilton Gould.
10. Jannes, born July 27, 1814.
11. Jerome, born Dec. 29, 1816, married (first) Anna Peacock; (second) 1845, Mary Davis; died 1875.

(V) Deacon Daniel (2) Ridley, son of Daniel (1) Ridley, was born in Saco, Maine, Sept. 27, 1802, died Feb. 20, 1850. He settled in Wayne, Maine, where he had gone with his parents in 1812. He worked for Stephen Boothby and received land for payment. He cleared a farm, and by great energy and perseverance he acquired a large and handsome estate. He built a brick house, but did not live long afterward.
He married (first) Sally Winter; (second) Rebecca Graves, who died Feb. 27, 1871.
Children of 1st wife, all b. at Wayne:
1. Paulina, born Dec. 13, 1828, married Joseph Lovett.
2. Silas C., born April 3, 1830, died Nov. 10, 1870.
3. Joseph W., born July 9, 1832, married Mary A. Robbins; was in the civil war.
4. Betsey, born Feb. 28, 1833, married Theodore B. Knox.
5. Joshua G., born May 30, 1834.
6. Jerome R., born March 22, 1835, married Clara Knowlton.
6. [they have 6 twice] Charles G., born Oct. 3 ,1837, married Vienna Melissa Goodwin.
7. Sarah, born Oct. 4, 1838, unmarried.
8. Jerome Maxim, born March 15, 1841, mentioned below.
9. Dean K., born Jan. 12, 1843, unmarried.
10. Lee S., born Dec. 24, 1844.
Child of 2d wife:
11. Horatio N., born March 11, 1848, resided at North Dartmouth, Mass.

(VI) Jason Maxim, son of Deacon Daniel (2) Ridley, was born in Wayne, Maine, March 15, 1841. He was educated in the public schools of his native town, and during his youth worked on his father's farm until he was sixteen years old, when he worked one season for Charles Graves, a farmer of the vicinity. He left home at the age of twenty and worked two years on the farm of C. Warren at Westborough, Mass. He returned to Wayne, and in 1870 entered the employ of Holman Johnson, manufacturer of shovel handles, of Wayne, and became a skillful mechanic in this line of work. After ten years in this factor he removed to Lima, Ohio, where for a short time he was employed in the same kind of work. Since 1880 he has held a responsible position in the shovel handle factory formerly of the firm of Marshall & Wason, then of C. M. Marshall, and finally of the Ames Shovel. & Tool Company.
In politics Mr. Ridley is a Democrat. he is a member of the Ancient Order of Untied Workmen of Wayne.
He married Abbie L., born Jan. 3, 1850, in Leeds, Maine, died 1888, daughter of Isaac and Abigal (Knapp) Stinchfield.
Charles Adelbert, mentioned below.

(VII) Charles Adelbert, son of Jason Maxim Ridley, was born in Leeds, Dec. 15, 1867. He attended the public schools at Wayne, the Wesleyan Seminary of Kent's Hill and the Waterville Classical Institute, now Coburn, and the Shaw Business College of Portland, Maine. He then came to Oakland, Maine, in the employ of the shovel handle manufacturers, where his father was employed, and has remaiend with this concern to the present (1908) time. Since 1898 he has been in partnership with F. W. Flanders in a retail dry goods store at Oakland.
In politics he is a Democrat and has been chairman of the board of selectmen for two years. He is a member of Messolonskee Lodge of Free Masons; of Drummond Chapter, No. 27, Royal Arch Masons; of Mt. Lebanon Council, Royal and Select Masters, Oakland. He is past master of the lodge, past high priest of the chapter and is at present master of the council. He is past chief ranger of Independent Order of Foresters; member of the Ancient Order of United Workmen, No. 6; of Cascade Grange, Patons of Husbandry, Oakland, and member of the degree of Honor. Mr. Ridley is insterested in public affairs and has given freely to support every movement for the welfare of the town.

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