Lands of William Kerley Sr. & William Kerley, Jr.
Source:  Source:  The Early Records of Lancaster,  Massachusetts 1643 - 1725
Edited by Henry S. Nourse, A.M.  1884

Lancaster Book of Lands

Transcribe by Janice Farnsworth… thank you Janice

The Lands of William Kerley Sener house Lotts his own 20 acors  the house Lott of William Kerley Sener is the Sixth Lott from John Prescutts house Lott northward contains more or Less twenty acors his purchased house Lott 20 acors of Richard Smith

The house Lott of Richard Smith first Granted to the said Richard and afterwards purchased of him by the said William Kerley and now in his possession is the Seventh Lott from John Prescutts above said Containing more or Less twenty acors: These two house Lotts Containing as aforesaid more or Less: fourty acors joyning the one to the other are Scittuat Lying and being in that Rang of Lotts on the west side of the North River bounded by the Street highway or Common Eastward the woods or Commons westward the house Lott of John Smith northward and the house Lott of Henery Kerley Southward in bredth and Length acording to the order of the town in the Book of Records for that Range

entervail lotts

his own 20 acors and Richard Smiths 20 acors. The entervail Lott of William Kerley Contains twenty acors more or Less is scituate Lying and being in the north entervail west of the North River also twenty acors more or Less Granted to Richard Smith and purchesed by the said William Kerley next adjoyning to the said twenty acors Southward this fourty acors entervail of and belonging to the said William Kerley is bounded by the North River eastward the Commons or common Land westward the entervail Lott of John Smith north and the entervail Lott of William Kerley Juner Southward

William Kerley, "husbandman," from Ashmore, England, came over in "the good Shipp the Confidence of London," April, 1638.  We find the family in Hingham first, but of Sudbury in 1641.  In 1647 he became freeman. His first wife, Ann, died in Lancaster 1658.  The next year he married Bridget Rowlandson, mother of the minister.  She dying, he took for his third wife Rebecca, widow of Thomas Joslin, A. D. 1664. He died July 14, 1670.  It would seem that he had been a soldier, for in the inventory of his personal effects were "Iron cloathes" and a "cutlash."  William Kerley was appointed one of the first prudential managers of the town, and seems to have been a very strong willed if not influential member of the board.  The Kerley lots are now the homesteads of F. D. Taylor and H. B. Stratton.

A deed dated April 30, 1688, from Henry Kerley, then of Marlborough, to Samuel Carter of Woburn, "clerk," transfers "the 6th house lott & three quarters of the 7th house lott," in all thirty five acres.

Richard Smith's deed of his dwelling house and twenty acre house lot to William Kerley, senior, is dated June 4, 1658.  Smith was of Sudbury son of John Smith.  His first wife, Mary, and her infant, died 27 3rd month 1654, and August 10 of the same year he married the widow Joanna Quarlls, by whom he had in Lacaster, John, 1655 and Francis, 1657.

He appears in 1656 among the proprietors of Groton, but perhaps did not become resident there, although he disappears from Lancaster.


Lands of William Kerley Juner house Lott his house Lott which is acording to his Grant in the old town book the ninth Lott from John Prescutts Lying and being on the west side of the highway that Goes to the north entervail and to Wallnutt Swamp and it buts Easterly upon that highway and westerly upon the Stated Common and it is bounded Southardly by the Lott of John Smith and north by sum second devision Land of William Kerley Sener and it Lyeth for twenty acors be it more or Less.

entervail Lott

More he hath his entervail Lott Lying and being in the north entervail and according to his Grant appears to be the fourth Lott thare and it buts easterly upon the North River and westerly upon Common land and is bounded Southerly by the Lott of John More and northardly it is bounded by the Land of William Kerley Sener and it Lyeth for twenty acres be it more or Less.

William Kerley, junior, came from Sudbury, signing the Nashaway covenant in 1653.  He was made freeman in 1666, having removed to Marlborough, where he became ensign.  He died Jan 4, 1684.  No children are named in his will, although by first wife, Jane, he had three daughters: Mary, 1667; Sarah, 1668 and Hannah, 1670.  A second wife, Anna, daughter of Thomas King, survived him.  He sold his Lancaster lands to Abraham Joslin, Jr., who perished with his wife and child in the massacre of 1676.  In 1693/4 Henry Kerley and the Joslin heirs transferred the "House lot of Wm Kerley" to Thomas Harris, a butcher from Boston, who had married the widow Rebecca Crocker, or "Croakham," Abraham Joslin's sister.  Thomas Harris in 1682 had bought the lands of John Ball, who was killed in the massacre.  Ball's lands are not described in the Book of Lands, although he was one of the first inhabitants.  Harris died in 1698.  Abraham Joslin also sold fifty acres to Nathaniel Robinson, with a proprietor's right.  Nathaniel Hapgood possessed lands at Bare Hill and elsewhere, laid out to the right of William Kerley, junior.

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