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About Sgt. William Harlow

Sgt. William Harlow was born in England about 1624. He is first mentioned in the town records of Plymouth, Massachusetts as a voter in 1646. The members of the Association have been unable to document the arrival of the William Harlow Family in the New World. The first mention of a William Harlow in the colonies is in the records of the History of Lynn, Mass. by Alonzo Lewis and published in 1829 on pages 62 and 63 about the year 1637.

It reads:"This year a large number of people removed from Lynn and commenced a new settlement at Sandwich. The grant of the township was made on the third of April 1637 by the General Court of Plymouth Colony. It is ordered that these ten men of Saugus, namely Edmund Freeman, Henry Feake, Thomas R. Chadwill, William Almy, Thomas Tupper and George Knoww shall have liberty to view a place to sit down on have sufficient land for three score families, upon the conitions propounded to them by the govenor (Winthrop) and Mr. Winslow.

The other proprietors were George Allen, Thomas Armtage, Anthony Besse, Mr. Blackmore, George Bliss, Thomas Boardman, Robert Bootfish, William Braybrook, John Briggs, Thomas Burge, Richard Bourne, George Burt, Thomas uler, Thomas Chillingworth, Edmund Clark, George Cole, John Dingley, Henry Ewer, John Friend, John Fish, Nathaniel Fish, Jabuathan Fish, Peter Gaunt, Andrew Hallet, William Harlow , William Hedge, Joseph Holway, William Hurst, John Jayce, Richard Kirby, Thomas Lauder, John Vincent, John Miller, William Newland, Benjamin Norge, Mr. Potter, James Shippe, George Slawson, Micheal Turer, Peter Wright, Nicholas Wright, Richard Wade, John King, John Winsor, Mr. Walliston and Thomas Willis. Their minister was the Rev. William Leveridge."


Our ancestor, Sgt. William Harlow was admitted a freeman in Plymouth in 1654 and in 1665 he began a long term as a "rater" (a parallel to the present day assessor) and served simultaneously for twenty-six years as one of three own selectmen. In 1673 he was appointed a Deputy of the General Court--the official name of the legislature of the now Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Sgt William Harlow died at Plymouth, Massachusetts 25 August 1691 "being entered into the 67th year of his age" or "in his 67th yeare neere finished" (Ref. MD,16:62; Plymouth Church Records, 1:271; Plymouth Town Records 1:102; and Plymouth Vital Records page 135)

The source for the genealogy information below is the book Harlow Family - Descendants of Sgt. William Harlow [1624/5 - 1691] of Plymouth, Massachusetts: The First Five Generations compiled by The Genealogy Committee of the Harlow Family Association and edited by Alicia Crane Williams, published by Gateway Press, Inc., Baltimore, MD, copyright 1997 Harlow Family Association, Inc.

Sergeant William Harlow was born (probably in England) between August 25, 1624 and August 25, 1625.  He died at Plymouth, Massachusetts on August 25, 1691.

On December 20, 1649 he married Rebecca Bartlett, daughter of Robert and Mary (Warren) Bartlett, who was born in Plymouth c. 1629-33 and died between June 2, 1657 and July 15, 1658.  They had four children together:

William (1650 - 1650)

Samuel (1652 - c. 1727)

Rebecca (1655 - 1727)

William (1657 - 1711/2)

On July 15, 1658 Sgt. Harlow married Mary Faunce, daughter of John and Patience (Morton) Faunce, born in Plymouth c. 1638-42 and died there October 4, 1664.  They had four children together:

Mary (1659 - 1743)

Repentance (1660 - 1738)

John (1662 - c. 1891) - no descendants

Nathaniel (1664 - 1721)

On January 25, 1665/6 Sgt. Harlow married Mary Shelley, daughter of Robert and Judith (Garnett) Shelley, who was baptized at Barnstable, Massachusetts on November 2, 1639 and died after January 30, 1693/4.  They had six children together:

Hannah (1666-1689) - no descendants

Bathshua (1667 - c. 1711)

Joanna (1669 - 1725)

Mehitabel (1672 - after 1691) - no descendants

Judith (1676 - c. 1728)

Benjamin (c. 1678 - c. 1747)

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