Thursday, October 2, 2014

52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks: Week 21: John Bartram (1699-1777)

John Bartram- husband of my 1st cousin, 11x removed

Photo Courtesy of 

"America's First Recognized Botanist"

b. 23 May 1699 in Darby, Pennsylvania
d. 22 Sep 1777 in Kingsessing, Pennsylvania 

Parents: William Bartram (abt 1677- 1712) & Elizabeth Eliza Hunt (1674-1701)

John was a farmer and a botanist. He is considered "America's First Recognized Botanist". His son William followed in his footsteps. John has his own page on Wikipedia explaining his contributions in the botany world. You can read about it Here

He had an 8 acre botanic garden in his home in Kingsessing, Pennsylvania on the west bank of the Schuylkill river. It is now a museum and garden. It's located at 5400 Lindbergh Blvd, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. You can view and find more information on this Garden Here.

John was such a huge influence in Philadelphia that in 1939, there was a high school named in his honor: John Bartram High School.  It's located at 2401 S. 67th St., Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. 

Because of his huge interest in Botany and science, there was some question as to whether he still had faith in God, so he was excluded from membership in the Quaker faith; he was viewed as Unitarian. 

Here is a transcription of a letter of disownment to John from the Darby Monthly Meeting (Quaker church):

"Whereas by the prevalence of a report concerning John Bartram (who had his birth and education amongst Friends and made profession with us from his youth, up to this time) viz. that he believed in the divinity of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ as being perfectly God as well as man, it became the tender concern of Friends to inquire of him whether he had given occasion for such a report by believing and uttering as above, that which he did not deny but rather appeared to vindicate and notwithstanding our earnest labor of love form time to time, cannot be prevailed to decline such a belief and by public testimony clear our Society form the great reproach of being unsound in the Christian faith. 
Wherefore fully believing in the miraculous conception birth, miraculous death, glorious resurrection and ascension of our blessed lord and Savior Jesus Christ, as recorded in holy writing; we can do no less for the clearing of truth than give the same that which we sincerely desire he may give forth by our Monthly Meeting held at Darby the 1st day of the 2nd month, 1758 and on behalf and by order of the same."
Abram Bonsall (signed).

Family #1: 

He married Mary Elizabeth Maris (1703-1727) on 25 Apr 1723. Her parents were Richard Maris (1672-1745) & Elizabeth Hayes (1672-1720). 
Mary is my 1st cousin, 11x removed.
John and Mary had 2 sons: 

1. Richard Bartram (1724-1728)
2. Isaac Bartram (1725-1802)

Family #2:

John married Ann Mendenhall (1703-1789) on 11 Oct 1729. 
Her parents were Benjamin Mendenhall (1662-1740) & Hannah Pennel (1673-1721).
Ann is also my 1st cousin, 11x removed.
John and Ann had 9 children:

1. James Bartram (1730-1824)
2. Moses Bartram (1732-1809)
3. Elizabeth Bartram (1734-1734)
4. Mary Bartram (1736-1817)
5. Elizabeth Bartram (1739-1824)
6. William Bartram (1739-1823)
7. Ann Bartram (1741-1824)
8. John Bartram Jr. (1743-1812)
9. Benjamin Bartram (1748-1826)

John died at the age of 78 years old. He is buried in the Darby Friends Cemetery in Darby, Delaware, Pennsylvania. 

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