| || Notes for John Fellows:|
John Fellows was born on October 20, 1668 and was one of the first of
Ephraim's children to move away from home. John married Rachel Varney of Chewbaca on October 14, 1692, having eight children; Varney, Isaac, Rachel, Abigail and John Jr., Nathan, Ann and Mary.
Witchcraft fear swept the local area in the Spring of 1692 when two young girls made accusations against several local women in the town of Salem just a few miles south of Ipswich. The Salem Witchcraft Trials which resulted, became America's most notorious case of witchcraft hysteria. The new royal governor, Sir William Phips, established a special seven-member court to try those suspected of witchcraft. Jurors were drawn from church membership lists, and the chained defendants had no counsel. Hundreds were imprisoned and 19 ultimately were hung on suspicion of being witches. John Fellows along with Rachel's father, Thomas Varney signed a petition in April of 1692 testifying to the strong religious standing of Rachel's uncle, John Proctor and his wife Elizabeth, who had been jailed on suspicion of witchcraft in Salem. It was to no avail, as John was hung in August 1692. The Reverend Cotton Mather who had been one of the initiators of the trials, soon had doubts and as a result, made an impassioned sermon against the mass arrests and trails. By October, community leaders cast suspicion on the evidence and the special court in Salem was dissolved. Those imprisoned were pardoned and eventually indemnities were paid to the families of those killed. Elizabeth Proctor, although also having been found guilty, had received a stay of execution until the birth of he baby. As a result, she survived long enough to also be pardoned. In 1696 both John and his father, Ephraim moved their families from Ipswich, Massachusetts and took possession of the Quinebaugh Land, East of the river by the same name, in an area now known as Windham County, Connecticut. John Fellows was one of the first to settle and establish what became the town of Plainfield, and was listed in town records as a "East side settler ". He was one of the first signers on a court petition dated May 31, 1699 to organize a town government. John Fellows was chosen constable. He helped lay out the division of Plainfield land several years later on February 28, 1703. John was sent as Plainfield's first representative to the General Court in May 1708 and again in 1714/5. Court records show that John Fellows , Ebenezer Harris and John Gallup were wrongly forced off land they had planted grain on by a Major Fitsh and as a result, lost their crops. Ephraim and John were listed as one of those who could vote for the town officers in 1709. John may have spent some time in New London, CT area between 1706-1712 since his last three children were born there. John received land grants for his services in the "Narraganset War", a war against the Narraganset Indians who were fighting the Colonists during the King Philips War of 1675-76. John died of fever Oct 20, 1748 in Plainfield, Connecticut.
John Fellows Will
In the Name Of God Amen. The Twenty first day of May in ye fourth year of his Majesties reign A.D. 1731.
I, John Fellows of Plainfield in the county of Windham in his majesties colony of Connecticut in New England Yeoman being of perfect mind and memory, blessed be God, calling to mind mortaliy of my body and knowing it is appointed for all men once to dye. I do make and ordain this my last Will and Testament, that is to say principally and first of all, I give and recommend my soul into ye hands of God, that gave it. Hoping through ye merits and death and passion of my Saviour Jesus Christ to have full and free pardon, of all sins and to have everlasting life, and my body I commit to ye grave to be decently buried at ye discretion of my executors hereafter named. Nothing doubting but at ye general resurrection I shall arise and come again by ye mighty power of God, and as touching such worldly estate, wherewith it had pleased God to bless me with in this life, I give devise and dispose of ye same in the following manner and form. That is to say, I give and bequeath unto my beloved son Isaac Fellows ten shillings in money to be paid by my executor ( hereafter named ), one year after my decease, which ten shillings with what I have already given him in land by Deed of Gift, which makes ye full of his portion.
Item. I give and bequeath unto my beloved son John Fellows ten shillings in money to be paid by my executor ( hereafter named ), one year after my decease, which ten shillings with what I have already given him in land by Deed of Gift, which makes ye full of his portion.
Item. I give and bequeath unto my beloved son Nathan Fellows and his heirs forever, all my lands in Plainfield or elsewhere ( that have not already been given by Deeds of Gift to my sons Isaac and John Fellows ) with all ye buildings, furnishings and improvements thereon, continued with all my husbantry, tackling and tools to my son Nathan, he paying all my just debts and funeral charges and sd ten shillings before given to my son John Fellows, and also I give unto my son Nathan Fellows all of my moveable estate of what kind soever, he paying ye legacies hereafter given.
Item. I give and bequeath unto my beloved daughter Rachel Herrick four pounds money or bills of published credit to be paid by my executors two years after my decease with four pounds what she hath already received which makes ye full of her portion.
Item. I give and bequeath unto my daughter Abigail Halls deceased children, ten pounds of money or bills of published credit to be equally divided amoungst them and to be paid by my executor three years after my decease which makes up the full of their portion.
Item.I give and bequeath unto my beloved daughter Mary Fellows thirty three pounds money to be paid by my executors with what she hath already received which makes up sixty pounds which is ye full of her portion.
Item. I give and bequeath unto my beloved daughter Ann Fellows thirty pounds money to be paid by my executor, with what she hath already received which makes up sixty pounds which is ye full of her portion. And I do hereby ordain , constitute and appoint my said son Nathan Fellows, my sole executor of this my last Will and Testament.
And I do Hereby disallow of all other will or wills by me heretofore madeor willed. Ratifying and confirming this and no other to be my last Will and Teastament. In witness whereof I have hereunto set my hand and fixed my seal today and year first above written.
Sealed, published, pronounced and declared by John Fellows to be his last Will and Testament in the presence of John Fellows
(Source for John Fellows Will; The American Genealogist, Vol 17, Jan 1941, P159-160.)
Editor's note: No Varney listed in John's will. Possibly he died at a young age!?
John, son of Ephraim connection
Researcher note: The logic behind the reasoning that John Fellows was the son of Ephraim fellows. " William Fellows, the immigrant had 4 sons....so one of them had to be the father of John b. 1668. While it's true that William had two brothers, Samuel and Richard; we know that Richard did not leave descendants and the line of Samuel is well proven and documented and there is no possible way for John to have connected with that line.
We have Isaac who m. Joanna Boardman. A family Bible in existence today, proves their children and birth dates. SOURCE: NEHGS Register, Vol. 127, No. 2, pgs. 125-129. The next son was Samuel b. ca. 1643....this is the person that some genealogist want to assign as the father to John. This Samuel was never married and lived with his sister and brother in law, Abigail & Samuel Ayres. Samuel Fellows died in Newbury or Rowley, MA on 1 Dec 1713. The Abigial (Fellows) and husband Samuel Ayres lived in Newbury and Rowley. Next son was Joseph b. abt. 1750. He m. Ruth Fraile in Ipswich on 19 April 1675....therefore cannot be the father of John b. 1668. That leaves us with Ephraim who m. Mary ? .....the only possible Fellows man to be the father of John. In addition to this, as you know, they both went to Plainfield, Windham Co. CT and every generation afterward had a son named Ephraim. This lineage has been accepted for generations by many societies....based on the preponderance of the greater weight of evidence or if you will, common sense." Audrey Kinezian 1996.