On this date in our family history . . . the 7th day of November . . . in the year 1760 . . . 38-year-old Ruth Porter nee Foster dies in Boxford, Massachusetts . . . the following day, the 8th of November, would be the 16th anniversary of the day she had married Benjamin Porter in Andover, Massachusetts . . . this Benjamin and Ruth are 6th great-grandparents to the Keeper of this family history blog . . .
Benjamin's family history in Andover traces back to his 3rd great-grandpa, Job Tyler, who is said to have been living in Andover as early as 1639 . . . it has been said of this Job that . . .
"He was a rude, self-asserting, striking personality" . . . and that . . . He did not . . . "learn prudence very fast, but he was himself. . . . He did not shape his words to suit sensitive ears. He resented dictation and found it hard to restrain himself from what he wanted to do through any prudential policy. . . . From this old canvas there gazes steadily out, not an ideal but a very real personage, an out and out Yankee type."
At a Tyler Family Reunion held in Andover on Wednesday, September 2nd, 1896, the gathering was called to the old North Parish Church, where Job Tyler anciently paid "minister's rates," and where his sons, Moses, Hopestill and John, were early communicants.
At this gathering, songs were sung, organization business was taken care of, and genealogies and letters of regret, as well as poems were read . . . including the following excerpts from a lengthy poetic composition written in honor of our Job . . .
In Newport, quaint Rhode Island town,
way down upon the coast.
There landed from old England's shore,
of whom we can now boast
A "Tyler"; from o'er the sea came he
to the woods and lofty hills.
To found a home and family,
and 'scape old country's ills.
"Sixteen Forty," or thereabout,
he stepped upon the strand
And pitched his tent in an ancient town
now known throughout the land
As Andover, of scholastic fame,
whose influence is known
In Forum, Pulpit, Rostrum,
where Knowledge it is shown.
"Job" was his appellation,
a patient man, 'tis said.
This horny-handed ancestor,
now numbered with the dead,
Who delved from early morn till night,
he strove to make a name,
Respected, loved, esteemed by all,
but yet, unknown to fame.
To gratify his longing
he went from town to town,
To Roxbury, Mendon, Arundel,
before he settled down.
But he came back to Andover,
and here resolved to stay.
Where we revere his memory
on this September day.
The supposition is,
his bones a grave doth fill
In the little old-time burial yard,
not far upon the hill;
No stone doth mark the sacred spot
or record can be found,
But one, his first born,
who lies there beneath historic ground.
The trees do wave their requiem
above the sacred dead,
So we should grant our meed of praise
for the spirits that have fled,
And add our mite of reverence for
those who went before,
And visit, each and all, the spot,
before the day is o'er.
As is stated in that poem, Job's final resting place has been lost to the sands of time . . . thanks to those involved in the referenced gathering, our Job is now memorialized with a bronze tablet attached to a boulder in the Old North Parish Burying Ground in North Andover, Essex County, Massachusetts . . . that boulder was relocated from the old Tyler farm in West Boxford . . . and placed near the gravestone of his son, Moses . . . the memorial was dedicated five years following the above reunion . . . on the 4th day of September in 1901 . . .
This blogpost was researched and prepared specifically for The Sixth Annual Great Genealogy Poetry Challenge over at cousin Bill's blog which is known as . . . West in New England . . .