An American Family History

Abigail Kitchen Guppy

American colonists continued to use British monetary units, namely the pound, shilling and pence for which £1 (or li) equalled 20s and 1s equalled 12d. In 1792 the dollar was established as the basic unit of currency.
In the 17th century jails were used as places to hold people accused of crimes until they were brought to trial, but not as places of punishment. A debtor could be held in jail until he paid his debts and political dissidents were also jailed. Punishments included execution, maiming, public humiliation and monetary fines.

Abigail Kitchen Guppy was born in Salem, Essex County, Massachusetts. Her parents were John Kitchen and Elizabeth Grafton.

She married John Guppy on April 3, 1669 in Salem. John was born on October 12, 1648 in Salem. He was the son of Reuben and Eleanor Guppy. Essex county court records show that Reuben had some problems. In 1641 he was whipped for

... for running away to the Estward fro his wyfe great wth Childe; for stealing & Blasfemie Lying & swearing etc." on complaint of Wm. Vincent. Robt. Pease complained that Guppi had stolen his axe. Sargeant Dixie had seen a hen in Guppi's breeches. Samuel ffuller and Robt ffuller testified that they went to Guppi's house, and Guppi said that the parings of his nails and a chip were as acceptable to God as the day of thanksgiving. He also Swore." (The Essex Antiquarian, Volume 3)

Abigail and John's children probably included:
Abigail Guppy (1672),
Elizabeth Guppy (1674/5),
Bethia Guppy, and
Rachel Guppy Phelps (married Henry Phelps).

In 1679 John received a summons for refusing to assist or obey Constable Poland that was signed by Hilliard Veren, cleric.

In 1683

John Guppy on Examination Confessed that he went with Black dick to Thomas Maule & there tooke up about 9 or ten yds. of stuf with triming as buttons & facing but did not so the neagro pay any mony but sinc he heard how things are he delivered the same goods unto the negor...

In 1684 John was an accomplice in a robbery. According to Perley's History of Salem, Massachusetts, Elizabeth Godsoe, a servant in Captain George Corwin's home, told her husband, William, that the captain, had large amounts of money in his home and that she had the key to the closet and cellar it was kept in.

On March 6, 1683/84, a group consisting of William Godsoe, John Collier, Nathaniel Pickman, and David, a negro belonging to John English, stole several bags about £500 worth of coins. They were caught and went to trial the following June.

William and Elizabeth Godsoe were sentenced to be branded with a "B" on the forehead and whipped 39 times or to pay £10. John Guppy, John Gatchell and son Thomas, Nathaniell Pickman, and John Collier were ordered to pay triple damages, be severely whipped 39 times, or to pay £10.

Abigail died in 1700 and John died in 1715 in Salem.

Salem is in Essex County, Massachusetts and was a significant seaport in early America. John Endicott obtained a patent from England and arrived there in 1628. Salem originally included much of the North Shore, including Marblehead. Salem Village also included Peabody and parts of Beverly, Middleton, Topsfield, Wenham and Manchester-by-the-Sea.

Old Style Calendar
Before 1752 the year began on Lady Day, March 25th,. Dates between January 1st and March 24th were at the end of the year. Old Style (O.S.) and New Style (N.S.) are used to indicate whether the year has been adjusted. Often both dates are used.

Children of John Kitchen
and Elizabeth Grafton

Robert Kitchen
Benjamin Kitchen
Abigail Kitchen Guppy
Priscilla Kitchen Hunn

Essex County, Massachusetts was created on May 10, 1643 by the General Court of the Massachusetts Bay Colony, when it ordered "that the whole plantation within this jurisdiction be divided into four sheires."



Historical Collections of the Essex Institute, 1860

John Guppy and Abigaile Kitchin were maried ye 3d 4 mo., '69; theire daughter Abigaile borne the 31 day of May, 107; Elizabeth borne the 8th February, 1674.

ye is an archaic spelling of "the."

The Genealogical Quarterly Magazine, Devoted to Genealogy, History, Heraldry, Revolutionary and Colonial Records published by E. Putnam, 1901

There is due Mr. John Gingell £6-15-0 (27 weeks at 55). He was one of those who was concerned in the Curwen and other robberies from warehouses in Salem in 1684. Wm. Goodsoe and wife Elizabeth, Joseph Getchell, and John Guppy, were accomplices. Godsoe and wife broke jail at Ipswich in July.

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©Roberta Tuller 2020
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