An American Family History

Isaac Cummings.

  also spelled Comins, Comings  
The town of Ipswich was established on August 5, 1634, from common land called Agawam. On October 18, 1648, that portion called the "Village" at the New Meadows was set off as Topsfield. The boundary line between Ipswich and Topsfield was established, February 28, 1694.

Isaac Cummings was born about 1600.

Anne Cummings (1629, married John Pease),
John Cummings (1630, married Sarah Howlett),
Isaac Cummings (1633, married Mary Andrews), and
Elizabeth Cummings (1640, married John Jewett).

Isaac was listed as a commoner in Ipswich in 1641.

In 1666 he was constable, and his son Isaac was his deputy.

He was a church deacon

In 1676 he was moderator of the town meeting.

Isaac died about 1677.

A constable was an elected official who was responsible for keeping the peace. His duties were more limited than the sheriff's. He apprehended and punished offenders, helped settle estates, and collected taxes.



Cattle were vital to a household and an important legacy.
Unweaned cattle are calves.
Female cattle are heifers and cows (had a calf).
Male cattle are steers (castrated) and bulls.
are trained draft animals and are often castrated adult male cattle.

The last will and testament of Isaac Comins Senier.

I, being sencable of my approaching desolution, being at present weak in body yet perfect in my understanding, having by the grace of God bene helped to provid for my future state in another world: doe now in ordering of what God hath been pleased to bestow upon me of the blessings of this life, take care and order that, in the first place, my debts be duly paid. nextly

I doe by this my last will and testament confirme to my son Isaac the ten acres of division land, on the south side of the great river, be it more or less: nextly,

I do give unto my son, John Juet, ten pounds, part in Cattel & part in household goods: nextly,

I doe will and bequeath to my grandson, Isaac, the son of my son Itsaac,

  • one year old hefer,
  • one little sow,
  • the Indian corn which he hath planted for himself and
  • the flax which he hath sown. Item, I doe give unto him
  • my chest 2d in bigness with the lock and key: item
  • my history book with such books as are his own, viz. a bible and testament. item, I doe give him
  • ten pounds to be paid at seventeen years of age in country pay.

item, I doe give my son, John Pease, thirty pounds to be payd out of the stock of cattle and household goods as much as may be att present & the rest in two years.

Item, I doe make my son John my sole executor and doe give unto him my house and lands, being forty acres, more or less, consisting of upland and meadow with all the privileges and emoluments thereof and apertainances thereunto belonging provided that this land shall stand bound in part and in wholl for the payment of these legacyes

and in case the said legacyes shall not be payd according to my will, the land shall be sold and payment be made out of the price thereof and the remainder shall be to the executor.

Item, my will further is that if any of these my children shall through discontent att what is done for them in this my will, cause trouble to arise to the executor that then there shall be nothing pay'd to him or them, but the legacy or legacyes willed to them shall return to and remain in the hands of the executor as his proper right.

My desire further is that Isaac Foster and Thomas Dorman would take care that this my will be duly performed.

Dated this 8th day of the 3d mth 1677.

Witness the mark of Isaac Cummings.

John Poore Sr Thomas Dorman. Isaac Foster.

Indian Corn (or flint corn) is the type of maize that Native Americans taught colonists to cultivate. The kernels come in a range of colors and are less prone to spoiling.


from The Cummings Memorial: A Genealogical History of the Descendants of Isaac Cummings, an Early Settler of Topsfield, Massachusetts, by George Mooar, published by B. F. Cummings., 1903

Isaac Cummings [Immigrant Ancestor] appears on a list of the "Commoners" of Ipswich, Mass., on the last day of the year 1641. He is said to have had, as early as July 1638, a planting lot in "Reedy Marsh," and a house lot in town....

In 1666 he was constable, and his son Isaac was his deputy, and in a deposition he states his age to be 65. The same year he was assessed 4s 7d to pay the town's indebtedness. He was deacon of the church, and in 1676, at least, moderator of the town meeting. No mention remains of his wife nor of her name. She was not living when his will was made, May 8, 1677. It is on file in the probate office, but unrecorded...

i. John [Cummings], born about 1630. On the list of Freemen, 1672, his name precedes Isaac's. 1673, he testified in court to being 40 years old; in 1678, 43 (47?) ; in 1679, 50.
ii. Isaac [Cummings], born about 1633. In 1692 he testified to being 60 years; in 1696, 63.
iii. Ann, born perhaps 1629, as she was said to be 60 years of age at her death, June 29, 1689. She married, Oct . 8, 1669, John Pease, his second marriage.
iv. Elizabeth, born , married Feb. 2, 1661—"same month and day of marriage of Abraham Jewett"—John Jewett, born about 1637.

Deacons played a respected and important role in early New England churches. They sat in a raised pew near the pulpit and had special duties during communion.

Any man entering a colony or becoming a a member the church, was not free. He was not forced to work, but his movements were carefully observed to see if they followed the Puritanical ideal. After this probationary period, he became a "freeman." Men then took the Oath of a Freeman where they vowed to defend the Commonwealth and not to overthrow the government.

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©Roberta Tuller 2020
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