Freedom was born in Dorchester in about 1642, the daughter of Henry and Elizabeth (Mather) Woodward. The family moved to Northampton in the Connecticut River Valley of eastern Massachusetts and that's where she married Jedediah Strong (1639-1733), who was originally from Hingham, in 1662.
[1677 Map of New England by William Hubbard.
[Ancestry.com. U.S., New England Marriages Prior to 1700 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2012. Original data: Torry, Clarence A. New England Marriages Prior to 1700. Baltimore, MD, USA: Genealogical Publishing Co., 2004.]
Jedediah** outlived two more wives, finally dying in his 96th year in Coventry, in Tolland County, Connecticut.
Northampton has had a rich history since it was first settled by the English in 1654.*** The view of it painted by American landscape artist Thomas Cole (1801-1848) shows the how the area looked 179 years ago.
[View from Mount Holyoke, Northampton, Massachusetts, after a Thunderstorm—The Oxbow. Artist: Thomas Cole; Date: 1836.
Medium: Oil on canvas. Metropolitan Museum of Art: Gift of Mrs. Russell Sage, 1908]
*Her children were Elizabeth, Abigail, Jedediah, Ford, Hannah, Thankful, John, Sarah, Lydia, Mary, Experience, Preserved, John (again) and a baby who was unnamed. Of the children, four were known to have died as infants and another died at age 17. Hannah is my direct ancestor through her granddaughter Esther Carpenter who married Benjamin Porter and are thereby my fifth great grandparents. My source for this information is here.
**You can learn more about Jedediah Strong here.
***Historic Northampton has a short video here.
© 2015 Copyright, Christine Manczuk, All Rights Reserved.