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Home: Surnames: Cahoon Family Genealogy Forum

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Re: William Cahoone
Posted by: Susan Olson (ID *****2435) Date: November 15, 2009 at 19:06:51
In Reply to: Re: William Cahoone by Colleen Cahoon of 879

Hi Colleen,

William's birthdate has never been determined exactly to the best of my knowledge. I have seen anything from 1610 to 1630, etc. If there was a certain age, we could better identify him. There is some very good research a cousin, Gary Calder, has done. You may contact me at and I will be glad to share it. Here are some items that seem to offer insight into his life.


House builder, Providence, RI. He LIKELY came to America as an indentured servant.

On May 4th, 1664, he was listed as the first Freeman on Block Island, Rhode Island. He was part of a group of independent thinkers led by Dr. John Alcock of Boston, Mass. (and one of the first graduates of Harvard). Their group separated from the Puritans for these four motivating principles: They felt the state should have no power over people's religious convictions. like preaching in their own homes. They felt the state had no say in people's right to vote, i.e. Having to own land to vote. They believed no one had the right to tell them what to charge for their goods and services. And, they believed that the Native Americans should be paid for their land. So, they removed themselves and their families to Block Island via the Taunton River, the Warren River, Mt. Hope Bay and across Narragansett Bay.
He was in Swansea, Mass., first settled in 1663 and established in 1667. He was one of the first signers admitted to the town in February 1669. See:

"*The three proposals were as follows:
1) That no erroneous person be admitted into the township as an inhabitant or sojourner.
2) That no man of any evil behaviouor contentious person to be admitted
3) That none may be admitted that may become a charge to the place. "
William was Swansea's first official town brickmaker as outlined in the town meeting notes for Dec. 24, 1673. In Swansea's town offices, there is still the original document stating this fact. The book is called: Proprietor's Book of Grants and Meetings, 1668-1769." It states, "At A Town Meeting of the Towns Men, December 24, 1673, It was Agreed upon by the Between the townsmen In the behalf of the town and William Cohoone Brickmaker that for and In Consideration of a Lot and other Accommodations or Grantes And Given by him from the town unto him the said William Cohoun. It was therefore Agreed and Concluded upon by the Parties Above so that the said Wiliam Cohoon Shall Supply all the Inhabitants of the Town with Bricks at a Price not Exceeding Twenty Shillings a Thousand in Current Pay Putting between Man and Man."
NOTE: The Wampanoag Tribe celebrated the first Thanksgiving in 1621 with the Pilgrims 54 years before William's death.

On June 24, 2000, William's descendants donated a plaque to the Swansea Historical Society. It was erected on a rock near the site of The Cahoone Brickworks along the Palmer River in Swansea, Mass. near the location of the Myles Garrisoned House.
On June 24, 1675, he volunteered to go and get a physician to treat several settlers who had been ambushed by the Wampanoag Native Americans while returning from a First Baptist Sunday morning service. This was during King Philip's (AKA: Metacomet, a Wamanpoag sachem or chief) War. He was, likewise, ambushed and stabbed to death. He left a wife, Elizabeth (Scranton) Cahoon(e) and seven children. His death may be in the West Plymouth Colony.
The parts of him that were later found were quickly buried a short time later, but there was no formal burial service due to the threat of attack. However, on June 25, 2000, the Cahoon's descendants held a formal Christian burial service in his honor led by Rev. Edgar Farley.



The following information is not concurred by the genealogy prepared for the Cahoon Reunions in Ohio and documented in the History of the Cahoon Family by Ida M. Cahoon.

Possibly came on the John & Sarah commanded by John Greene in 1652.

There are some possible Moore family links on the same ship. Here is an excerpt:

Extract from a Letter written by Rev. John COTTON to Lord General CROMWELL, dated at "Boston in N. E. 28 of 5th 1651," respecting some prisoners of the same class of persons included in the above list sent over before these arrived. The all probably were taken at the battle of Dunbar, 3 Sep 1650, when Cromwell was victorious and four thousand were slain and ten thousand made prisoners.

"The Scots, whom God delivered into your hands at Dunbarre, and whereof sundry were sent hither, we have been desirous (as we could) to make their yoke easy. Such as were sick of the scurvy or other diseases have not wanted physick and chyrugery. They have not been sold for slaves to perpetual servitude, but for 6 or 7 or 8 yeares, as we do our owne; and he that bought the most of them (I heare) buildeth houses for them, for every four a house, layeth some acres of ground thereto, which he giveth them as their owne, requiring three dayes in the weeke to worke for him (by turnes) and 4 dayes for them themselves, and promiseth, as soone as they can repay him the money he layed out for them, he will set them at liberty."

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