FIRST RESIDENCE: Boston
REMOVES: Charlestown 1632, Barnstable 1640, Yarmouth by 1653
CHURCH MEMBERSHIP: Admitted to Boston church as member #19, which would be in the fall of 1630 [BChR 13]; dismissed 14 October 1632 to participate in forming the new church at Charlestown [BChR 16]; on 2 November 1632 John and "Bethiah Haule" were admitted to Charlestown church as founding members [ChChR 7].
FREEMAN: 14 May 1634 [MBCR 1:369].
EDUCATION: His inventory included "books" valued at 12s.
OFFICES: Barnstable constable, 1 June 1647 [PCR 2:115]. Yarmouth surveyor of highways, 7 June 1653 [PCR 3:33]. Plymouth grand jury, 3 June 1657, 8 June 1664 [PCR 3:115, 4:61]. Coroner's jury on the death of Mary Chase of Yarmouth, October 1659, and on the death of "the child of Nicholas Nicarson," 30 October 1667 [PCR 3:172, 4:170].
In Barnstable section of 1643 Plymouth Colony list of men able to bear arms [PCR 8:193].
ESTATE: On 10 January 1634/5 received four acres of planting ground at Charlestown [ChTR 12], and in a January 1635/6 list of those with four acres of planting ground [ChTR 15]. Allotted one-half share of hayground in 1635, which was increased to a share and a half [ChTR 19, 20, 22]. Credited with two and a quarter cow commons in 1637 [ChTR 33], and on 30 December 1638 again with two and a quarter cow commons in the stinted common [ChTR 42]. Held five acres Mystic Side, 1637 [ChTR 27], and in the Mystic Side allotments of 23 April 1638 had parcels of five, twenty-five and five acres [ChTR 36].
In the 1638 Charlestown land inventory "John Haule" held eight parcels of land: half an acre of ground with a dwelling house and garden; four acres arable land in Line Field; two acres meadow in South Mead; two and a quarter milch cow commons; one acre meadow in Mystic Marshes; five acres woodland in Mystic Field; five acres woodland in Mystic Field; and twenty-eight acres of land in Water Field [ChBOP 32-33].
On 1 July 1672 there were recorded the "bounds of the land of John Hall Senior which he and his sons have possessed upwards of twenty years," all in Yarmouth: fourteen acres "upon Nobscussett Necke"; fifteen acres of upland; and twelve acres of meadow [PCLR 3:233].
In his will, dated 15 July 1694 and proved 25 August 1696, "John Hall senior of Yarmouth" directed that "all those several parcels and portions of land which I formerly gave to my sons shall stand and remain to them ... forever ... to my eldest son Samuel I give twenty acres"; to "my son John I give twenty acres"; to "my son Benjamin" fifteen acres; to "my son Elisha" twelve acres; "all which said parcels of land is now in the tenure and occupation of each of them"; to "my son John ... three acres more"; to "my son Elisha ... my parcel of marsh or meadow land lying above the little beach"; to "my son William and to my son Elisha ... my parcel of meadow and broken marsh lying below the little beach" equally divided between them; to "my said son Elisha my now dwelling house, outhousing, yards, orchard, together with all my lands and meadows whatsoever except such part or parcels as is herein before mentioned"; to "my sons John, Joseph, William, Nathaniel, Gershom, Benjamin and Elisha" residue of moveable estate equally divided; "my two sons John and Elisha" executors [MD 31:36, citing BarnPR 2:23].
The inventory of John Hall was sworn 6 August 1696 and totalled 66 2s. 3d., including no real estate [BarnPR 2:24].
BIRTH: By about 1611 (see COMMENTS below) and perhaps earlier.
DEATH: Yarmouth 23 July 1696 [YarVR 129].
MARRIAGE: By about 1636 Bethia _____; she is said to have died at Barnstable 1 February 1683[/4] [Brainerd Anc 141].
COMMENTS: Savage and Wyman suggest that this John Hall came from Coventry in England, but there is no evidence for this whatsoever. Banks offers St. Mary Whitechapel, London, as an origin for this man, but cites only "Banks Mss.," so not much weight should be put on this claim either, without further exploration [Topo Dict 102].
John Hall was admitted as an inhabitant of Charlestown in April 1633 [ChTR 9]. He appeared in the lists of Charlestown inhabitants dated 9 January 1633/4 and January 1635/6 [ChTR 10, 15]. He signed his name to the town agreement which established the office of selectman, 10 February 1634/5 [ChTR 13], and on 1 May 1637 he was warned about making encroachments on the common [ChTR 28].
Both Savage and Pope muddled this John Hall and one or two others. Savage combined the records of this John Hall with those of a second man of the same name at Charlestown, whereas Pope distributed the records of two John Halls and one Samuel Hall across two entries under the name of John Hall. Jacobus sorted out the confusion in a long note published in 1948 [Brainerd Anc 142-43]; the critical point is to watch the name Bethia as wife of John.
The gap of six years between the first record of Bethia as wife of John Hall (2 November 1632) and the first record of a baptism for a child (13 May 1638) is puzzling. The eldest son, Samuel, was very likely born during this period, say in 1636, but this still leaves a sizable gap; and if John and Bethia Hall were residing in Charlestown throughout this period, why wasn't a baptism for Samuel recorded? One possible solution derives from the problematic nature of the early Charlestown church records, which were recopied some years after the date of the events recorded. Savage demonstrated that the Charlestown church records have RICHARD KETTLE married to his wife ESTHER WARD some time before the marriage actually took place. The same may have happened with John and Bethia. If that is true John and Bethia may not have married until about 1636, and if she were from some place other than Charlestown, perhaps Samuel was baptised there, in a church whose records no longer exist. This proposed solution may also explain the gap of four years between John Hall's admission to Boston church and his admission as a freeman, for he may not yet have been twenty-one in 1630.
On 8 June 1655 concerning a "complaint made by John Hall, of Yarmouth, against Francis Baker, of the same town, for abusing Samuell Hall, his son, and servant to the said Baker, by kicking of him and otherwise unreasonably striking of him, the Court have ordered, that the said Samuell Hall shall be and continue with his father until the next Court of elections" [PCR 3:83]; the controversy was ended when on 7 August 1655 the court ordered John Hall to pay Francis Baker £8 for the remainder of Samuel Hall's time [PCR 3:88].
BIBLIOGRAPHIC NOTE: Amos Otis treated his family in his survey of Barnstable families, in the course of which he described some of the lands held by John Hall at Barnstable and Yarmouth [Otis 1:450-56].