Saugus, Massachusetts was home for the family in the 1600s

Ironworks on the Saugus – E. N. Hartley

I found this volume on eBay a number of years ago. Since my research indicated that 8 and 9 times great grandfathers, Joesph Jenks and his son, Joseph Jenks, Jr. both had a hand in the development and building of the Ironworks, I jumped on the item and bought it.

Once again, 8*GGF’s political bent was chronicled on page 18:

“The magistrates tried to enforce sumptuary laws, restricting, for example, the wearing of fancy clothing to people of recognized social and economic standing. If the ironworkers managed to get their hands on silver lace, they or their wives were, by their lights, freely entitled to wear them. Much the same essentially non-medieval outlook underlay a workingman’s interest in politics, or in religion mixed with politics, which must have been close to zero when the Ironworks was first erected, but which by 1661 had a son of Joseph Jendks [Joseph, Jr] in court for treason. He had dared to say that ‘if he hade the King heir he would cutt off his head & mak a football of it.’ Testimony offered in a number of court cases also made it plain that certain workers held no high opinion of local government authority, particularly when liquor had loosened lips that ordinarily had closely to be guarded”

There is a great deal more on Jenks’ participation. But being charged with treason is one of the high points. Grandfather was not convicted. As stated in an earlier posting, Grandmother was not as lucky in the courts as Grandfather; she was convicted and fined for wearing the silver lace mentioned above.

About Pat Shaul

Genealogist / Family Historian; Blog started as a record of my Grandfather's post card collection which ran for 15 months. Then, in June, 2017, I changed over to reporting and commenting on notifications from the ANCESTRY app "We're Related" I then started to provide snippets into ancestor biographies on the dates that were significant anniversaries.
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