DeVan Family History and Genealogy

Gallop Family


John Gallop was born in England circa 1590 and died in Boston, Mass. on January 11, 1650. He married Christobel Brushett on Jan 19, 1617 in St. Mary's Church in Bridport, England.

John left England for Boston on March 20, 1630, aboard the Mary and John, captained by Thomas Chubb. It is not clear why John left England; he may have desired to settle in New England, or he may have wished to explore the prospects of transporting immigrants to the New World.

Seventy-one days later the Mary and John sailed into the cove near Nantasket Beach and anchored near where the village of Hull stands. This was in violation of Capt. Chubb's contract to land his passengers on the bank of the Charles River. The stranded passengers hired a boat to carry them to Watertown and eventually the party moved to unoccupied land in what is now Dorchester, Mass.

John Gallop soon moved to Boston and was one of the earliest grantees of land in the northern part of the town where he had a wharf and house. The locality was known as Gallop's Point and was the southeast part of the peninsula. He bought a ship and was engaged in coastal trade and, on occasion, served as pilot for ships entering Boston harbor.

Christobel Gallop was hesitant to take a long and uncertain sea voyage to the New World, in spite of encouragement by her husband, and she and the children remained in England. John was so disturbed that he considered returning to England. However, he had become an important man in the colony and Governor Winthrop wrote the following to the great Puritan leader, Rev. John White in Dorchester:

The Rev. Mr. White successfully pursuaded Mrs. Gallop, and she and the children arrived on September 4, 1633 after an eight-week voyage on the Griffin. John Gallop piloted the ship into Boston Harbor through a new channel he had discovered.

John Gallop was made a freeman in April 1634. He was admitted to the First Church in Boston on January 6, 1634, and Christobel was admitted on June 22, 1634.

John Gallop was a pioneer in the important coastal trade between Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Connecticut. Within a year after he moved to Boston, there was great concern in the Providence Plantation when his shallop and its cargo of foodstuffs was overdue. When it finally arrived, Roger Williams wrote to his friend Governor Winthrop, "God be praised, Capt. Gallop hath arrived."

On December 6, 1632, Gallop and his vessel were engaged by the Massachusetts Magistrates for the first naval task force sent out by any New England colony. The French had fortified a couple of outposts and from these footholds they raided Penobscot, carrying off beaver skins belonging to the Plymouth colony. They also captured and robbed an English sea captain, Dixy Bull. To add to the troubles, Bull, after he was stripped of his cargo, turned pirate and was preying upon Massachusetts fishing and shipping. Capt. Gallop's ship, manned with 20 volunteers under command of his friend John Mason, was dispatched to police these depredations. Head winds and a blizzard forced Capt. Gallop to take refuge in Cape Ann Harbor where he was storm-bound for two weeks. He returned to Boston on January 2. When spring came he sailed forth again but failed to find Bull, who had sailed south to Virginia. Gallop and Mason were paid £ 10 each by the General Court of Massachuttes to pay for expenditures.

In 1635, John Gallop was hired to transport the Cogswell family from Maine. John Cogswell had embarked from Bristol, England on May 23, 1635. The voyage was long and disastrous. The passengers were washed ashore from the broken decks of their wrecked ship Angel Gabriel, at Pemaquid (now Bristol, Maine). John Cogswell and his family were spared their lives, and they had salvaged a large tent which was pitched upon the beach and provided shelter until help arrived. At his first opportunity, John Cogswell left for Boston where he engaged Capt. Gallop to sail a small bark to Pemaquid and transport the Cogswell family to Ipswich, Massachusetts Bay Colony.

In the spring of 1636 John Gallop, eager for a spring trading cruise, cast off from his wharf in Boston Harbor in his sloop with his sons William and John, and a hired man as crew. He rounded Cape Cod and set a dead- reckoning course for Saybrook Point. Off Block Island they signted a small ship anchored in a broad cove close inshore. There was no watch on board and she appeared to be deserted. Her rigging was loose and her gaff swung wildly as she rocked in the choppy sea. Gallop hove to and on approaching recognized a pinnace of John Oldham, a coastal trader. On deck there was a score of Indians sleeping. He hailed and a couple of Indians jumped into a heavily laden canoe lashed alongside and paddled rapidly for the shore. There was great confusion aboard the pinnace but the natives succeeded in slipping the cable and standing off before the wind headed for Narragansett Bay.

Convinced that Oldham was in trouble, Gallop hauled up alongside and was greeted with a shower of spears and arrows and a volley from several muskets. His sons opened fire with two great duck guns mounted on swivels and the Indians took refuge below deck. The odds were too great to risk boarding so Gallop put up his helm and beat to windward, then, coming about, bore down on the pinnace before the wind. The 20-ton sloop rammed the smaller vessel with such force the she heeled over on her beam end and water poured down the hatchway. Panic-stricken, the Indians scrambled on deck. Several leaped overboard and were drowned; others hid in the hold. Gallop withdrew to repeat his ramming maneuvre.

Gallop had the sudden inspiration to make the blow more devastating by lashing his anchor to the bow, its sharp flukes pointing outward, thus improvising an iron-clad ram two centuries before naval architects adopted this idea. The pinnace was now virtually adrift, falling off to leeward. When the sloop again crashed into her windward quarter the flukes of the anchor-ram penetrated the hull. The two ships were clamped fast together.

The son's double-loaded the duck guns, but their shots into the hold had little effect. Gallop loosened his fasts and hauled up to windward a third time. Several more Indians jumped overboard, but one, obviously a sachem, stood up on the deck making signs of surrender. Gallop drew up alongside, took the prisoner aboard and bound him hand and foot. Another came on deck, but fearing to keep two such wily savages together in the tiny cabin, he was thrown overboard. Two Indians still lurked in the hold, but Gallop and his crew boarded the pinnace and inspected the shambles.

In the cabin they found John Oldham's head, the skull crushed, hacked from the body which lay in a corner, stripped naked, slashed with wounds, disgracefully mutilated. "God give you peace, Brother Oldham," prayed Capt. Gallop as they lowered the corpse into the ocean.

They collected whatever of the murderers' plunder that seemed worth salvaging, stripped the pinnace of her sails and rigging, took her in tow and laid a course towards Fisher's Island. But the wind was rising rapidly and it soon became evident that the to save themselves the unwieldy tow must be cut loose. She drifted away towards Narrangansett Bay and probably fetched up on the rocks off Point Judith.

This skirmish with the Indians was was to become the start of the Pequot War, the first of many wars between whites and Indians.

John Gallop's name first appears in the town records in 1636: "It is ordered that John Gallop shall remove his payles at his yarde ende within 14 days, and to rainge them even with the corner of his house, for the preserving of the way upon the Sea Bancke."

In June 1637, several Massachusetts ships arrived at Saybrook, Connecticut with reinforcements to supplement land operations against an uprising of the Pequot Indians in the area. It was mutually agreed "that the Bay men should persue the fleeing Pequots in a joint land and wate operation." Gallop may have been the skipper of one of the ships in the little flotilla that brought the Massachusetts troops. We know that his was one of the supply ships that accompanied the land expedition and he was on hand in Fairfield harbor. Bradford wrote in his history: "Those that were wounded were fetched off soon by John Gallop who came with his shalop in a happie hour to bring them vituals and carrie their wounded men to ye pinass where our cheefe surgeon was with Mr. Wilson, being about 8 leagues off."

John Gallop shows on the 1640 Boston plan on the southeast side of Middle Street, near Gallop's Wharf, as shown on Bonner's map of 1722 and Burgiss' map of 1729. He is shown on the 1645 Boston plan at the same location, and the plan indicates Gallop's Point northwest of the wharf. The Bonner map (1722) shows Gallop's Wharf at the foot of Wood Lane and Gallop's Alley between Middle and Fish Streets. The Burgiss map (1729) shows Gallop's Wharf and island in Boston harbor, as does the DesBarres map of Boston, 1775.

In his will, dated October 10, 1649, his widow "is the sole executrix and to her is left all 'goods and lands' with three exceptions. To son John, who might be expected to be the chief beneficiary, he left 'the new shallop' and to daughter, Joan, 'my haeffer.' The two younger sons 'shall imploy the bark,' the first year all for their mother's benefit and thereafter two-thirds for them and one-third for her. Upon her death, they will inherit everything 'if they carry themseoves as obedient children,' otherwise 'she shall have liberty to dispose of all as she shall thinke good.'"

The inventory of his estate, dated December 26, 1649 lists "Owne house and ground lying in Boston, that is to say ye house and garden together withe you towne shoure upon ye flattes for liberty of wharfage granted by ye towne; The island called by ye name of Gallop's Island, containing about 16 acres; Foure acres lying at Long Island; owne vessel or pinnis, called by name of ye Buck. Whole am't of inventory £ 311 10s. 8d." Children registered in St. Mary's Church, Bridport are Joan, John, William, and twins Samuel and Nathaniel. See genealogy page for dates. Son William returned to England and died there fighting for Cromwell.

John Gallop, son of John and Christobel (Brushett) Gallop, baptised in St. Mary's Parish, Bridport, England, January 25, 1620; died South Kingston, Rhode Island, December 19, 1675 in the Narragansett Swamp Fight. Married Hannah Ann Lake in Boston in 1643. Hannah was the daughter of John and Margaret (Reade) Lake. See Lake Family history. Hannah arrived in this country on October 6, 1635 on the ship Abigale, with her sister Martha, her mother, and her Aunt Elizabeth (Reade) Winthrop, wife of John Winthrop, Jr.

John arrived in this country on September 4, 1633, on the ship Griffin with his mother, brothers, and sister Joan. Early on he entered into the coastal trade with his father. John and his brother William were with their father and assisted him with the re-capture of John Oldham's vessel from Indians, off Block Island.

In 1637 he was with the Massachusetts forces in the Pequot War. In 1651 he received a grant of eight acres in New London, "in the heart of the town, east of the town street to the beach and extending north from State to Federal." Two years later he sold his property and build a new house, called Whitehall, on the east bank of the Mystic River on 300 acres granted to him by the General Court "with respect unto the services his father has done for the country." The following year he received an additional 150 acres "in lieu of his claim to land on General neck, a gift from Gen. Stoughton to his father at the end of the Pequot War." In 1666, 1667, and 1671, the General Court gave him additional grants totaling 250 acres for his services in the Pequot war. John Gallop was a selectman in Stonington in 1664 to 1668, 1671, and 1673, a town representative at General Court in 1665 and 1667, shipowner and coastal trader, and Indian interpreter. He was Captain of the First Company of the Connecticut forces under Major Robert Treat at the Great Swamp Fight at Narragansett, Rhode Island, December 19, 1675, and was one of the six captains who fell in storming the fort. John Gallop was buried near the scene of the battle.

By court order, his estate was divided as follows: to his widow £ 100; to son John £ 137; to Benadam £ 90; to William and Samuel, each £ 89; to his five daughters £ 70 each. Children of John and Hannah were Hannah, John, Benadam, William, Samuel, Christobel, Elizabeth, Mary, and Margaret. See the genealogy page for more details.

Source: "Descendants of John Gallop," Western Reserve Historical Society, Cleveland Ohio


Other descendants of John Gallop include Emily Dickensen, George Gallup (the Gallup Poll), and the George Bush family.


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