Robert PEARSON: Birth: 3 DEC 1683.
Thomas PEARSON: Birth: 23 OCT 1685.
Lawrence PEARSON: Birth: 20 OCT 1687.
John PEARSON: Birth: 10 JAN 1691/92.
Sarah PEARSON: Birth: 8 FEB 1694/95.
Able PEARSON: Birth: 1695.
Benjamin PEARSON: Birth: 1 DEC 1698.
Mary PEARSON: Birth: 2 MAY 1701.
Margery PEARSON: Birth: 23 SEP 1703.
Note: Thomas was born in 1653 in Wilmslow, Cheshire County, England. Wilmslow is about 30 miles east of Liverpool and 12 miles south of Manchester. It was a strong center of Puritanism in the 1600's. Thomas and his family lived in tumultuous times in England. In 1642, eleven years before Thomas' birth, civil war broke out in England when Charles I wanted to rule the Puritan controlled Parliament. Oliver Cromwell, leader of the Puritans, took command of the government when Charles was killed in 1649. He ruled until his death in 1658, then was succeeded by his son. In 1660, when Thomas would have been 7 years old, the monarchy was restored when Charles II became King. In 1652, during the rule of the Puritans, George Fox founded the Society of Friends or Quakers. The Quakers expanded in number during the years of Puritan rule (1649-1660) and after the restoration of the monarchy. They were widely persecuted for their beliefs. Thomas Pearson, a Quaker, was born and lived in a strongly Puritan area of England. He immigrated to Marple Township, Chester County, Pennsylvania in 1683 when he was about 30 years old. We have several versions of his immigration. In one, according to "Pearson's Places and Things", the Pearson family newsletter, he came over on the ship Endeavor in September, 1683. Another version which comes from a book on William Penn and the Quakers entitled "The Dutch and Quaker Colonies in America" by John Fiske published in 1900, a Thomas Pearson came over with William Penn on the ship Welcome in 1682. The ship sailed from Deal in the late summer of 1682 with 100 passengers and landed in Upland, PA. on October 27, 1682. This Thomas Pearson was the maternal grandfather of the first famous American painter Benjamin West. Aunt Inez' original information shows Thomas' daughter Sarah marrying John West. These two individuals, it turns out, are the parents of Benjamin. The Quaker book notes that Thomas was a friend of Penn and, upon arrival in America, Penn said to Pearson, " 'Providence has brought us here safe. Thou hast been the companion of my perils. What wilt thou that I shall call this place?' 'Call it Chester,' replied Pearson, who had come from that most quaint and beautiful city of old England." So the site in Pennsylvania was called Chester County after Cheshire County, England. Source: History of Delaware Co., PA by George Smith, M.D. (p. 491) "Pearson, Thomas, frequently called Thomas Person, with his wife Margery, came from England with William Penn when on his first visit to Pennsylvania. If any reliance can be placed on tradition, it was upon his suggestion that the name of Upland was changed to Chester. He settled in Marple township on the tract marked "Thomas Perce" on Holme's map. His children were Robert, Thomas, Lawrence, Enoch, Alice, Sarah and Benjamin, all born in this country. His daughter Sarah, intermarried with John West, and was the mother of the great painter Benjamin West. His son Robert Pearson, intermarried with Catharine the daughter of James Thomas of Merion. Thomas Pearson the elder was alive in 1706. Pearson, some of the descendants took the name of Parsons, Person and Pierson." Source: Benjamin West: A Biography Further information on Thomas Pearson is provided in a biography of Benjamin West entitled "Benjamin West: A Biography". The book notes that Thomas and Margery came over from England in 1683. It identifies Thomas as a mason by trade. It also notes that 10 offspring came of the marriage. Aunt Inez shows 11. Source: Emigrants of Pennsylvania, 1641-1819, Pennsylvania Magazine of History and Biography Edited by Michael Shipp Tepper "Tho. Pierson and Margt his wife late of ditto (Poonnall in Cheshire), mason, came in ditto (Endeavor of London, A Ketch George Thorp M.)" "John his brother & Mary Smith his sister, all of the same place, came in
Thomas Pearson was born and raised in Cheshire, England. He married Margery Ellen Smith, February 18, 1683. They were Quakers. Shortly after their marriage, they emigrated to the United States on the ship ENDEAVOR, along with Thomas' brother John and the Thomas Janney family, ( Thomas Janney was probably the brother of Elizabeth Janney, Thomas' mother ). They settled first in Pennsylvania. Later generations migrated to South Carolina and then to Ohio in the 1800's. The land that Thomas moved to in Pennsylvania was purchased by his brother John, who had purchased it from William Penn before his leaving England. According to West Chester, PA court records, it states that this land was transferred to Thomas Pearson from John Pearson (his brother) who in turn transferred it to his eldest son Robert before his death in 1734
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