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Francis Stiles (b. August 01, 1602, d. 1660)

Francis Stiles (son of Thomas Stiles and Marie (or Mary) (Stiles)) was born August 01, 1602 in Milbroke, Bedfordshire, England, and died 1660 in Stratford, Fairfield, CN.

 Notes for Francis Stiles:
"Edward married Hannah STILES-36966, daughter of Francis STILES-37019 and Sarah (or Joan) ????-36967, about 1651. Hannah was born about 1631. She died before 1679 in prob Stratford, Fairfield Co, CT.

Hist and Gen of Ancient Windsor 1892 HR Stiles P474 720
Genealogy of the Puritans RR Hinman 1856
Hist and Gen of families of old Fairfield Jacobus
DEATH: CAG III, 666. Also Derby VR2-41 Edward intends to marry widow Hilliard 7 Dec 1679.
Families of old Fairfield, D.L. Jacobus
Hist. and Gen. of Ancient Windsor, 1892 H.R. Stiles P720

Mr. Francis Stiles came to this country in 1635 on the pinnace Christian, owned by Sir Richard Saltonstall (forefather of all the New England Saltonstalls). Mr. Stiles was a citizen of London and a master carpenter. He was engaged by Sir Richard to lead a group of colonizers to America on behalf of the Earl of Warwick, who had obtained a patent from King Charles I. Mr. Francis (in all probability pronounced 'Frauncis') and his brothers Henry, John, and Thomas, two of their wives and two children, and nineteen other Englishmen cleared the custom house on the Thames 16 Mar 1634/5 and dropped anchor in Boston Harbor 16 Jun 1635, a voyage of three months

His task over here was to build some houses for Sir Richard and his colleagues, who were planning to come over later if things got too hot in England under Charles' persecution of the Puritans.

Mr. Francis didn't get along well with Robert, the son of Sir Richard, and for several years was in and out of court many times against one of the Saltonstalls.

From Dorcester the Stiles party of 27 people moved on to the Windsor colony on the Connecticut River. It is of interest that shortly after building himself a "sufficient house in Connecticut" Francis Stiles went back to England, whether for business or personal reasons I don't know. (Suppose, just suppose, that he had left a wife and daughter named Hannah back there and returned to get them After several months in England, Mr. Francis returned to America for the last time, probably in 1636, and settled down to carry on the business he'd been sent there for."
(This is from a section of the Genealogy of the Puritan Settlers of Connecticut, 1852. by RR Hinman.)

One source for the early life of Francis STILES is Francis Stiles in English Records (Hinman Family Association Research Report No. 6) by Barry E. Hinman, dated 17 May 1978. There we read on p. 2, (citing the published parish register in Bedfordshire Parish Registers, v. 20), that Francis STILES was baptized in Milbrook, Bedfordshire, 1 Aug. 1602, son of Thos STYLLES. Other entries in this parish register show that Thomas had a wife Mary in 1604, 1607 and 1612. In 1614 Thomas STYLES, carpenter, was buried on 6 Mar. and on 20 Mar. widow Mary STYLES was buried. An entry for 22 Jan. 1605 records the burial of Joan STYLES, wife of Thomas, but that may be a mistake for the daughter Joan, who was born the prior year. Also recorded as sons of Thomas are Henry, baptized 27 Nov. 1593 and John, 25 Dec. 1595. Thomas is baptized as son of Thomas and Mary, 7 Feb. 1612.

Ten years after his father's death we find the 21 year old Francis in London. On p. 1-2 of the Research Report mentionedabove are extracts from the records of the Worshipful Company of Carpenters. The Court Book, under date of 11 Dec. 1623, records that ffrancys STYLES, son of Thomas of Milbrook in the County of Bedford, carpenter, deceased, is presented by Hugh STANDISH to be his apprentice for seven years, beginning 25 Mar. 1624. A second extract, dated 11 May 1631, records the paying of freeman fees by ffrancis STYLES, he having been made free by his master Hugh STANDISH.

Before leaving the records of the Carpenters' Company we should note the record cited on p. 4 of the above mentioned report. At a Court held on 26 Mar. 1632 Henry STYLES was admitted to the Carpenters' Company by redemption, paying the sum of L5 to the company for the privilege of being admitted without having served an apprenticeship. The Company was induced to grant him this favor at the request of Thomas Lord Coventry, the Lord Keeper of the Great Seal, obviously an important figure. Since Connecticut records refer to Henry STILES, the brother of Francis, as a carpenter, this is apparently the record of his attaining that title.

Francis STILES, aged 28 in May of 1631, was at last free to marry (apprentices were not allowed to do so). Where and how he found his bride we do not know, nor is it certain that Sarah, his widow, was his only wife. That he married someone from London and connected in some way with the Carpenters' Company is of course possible, but it is equally possible that she was neither. As we shall see below it seems that the marriage must have taken place in 1631 or 1632 and that a child was born in 1632. No record of either event has so far been found.

When next we hear of Francis STILES it is as a passenger aboard the ship Christian of London, John White master, sailing from London in March 1635 and arriving in Boston in June. He is listed as aged 35, and he and his fellow travellers have their certificate of conformity to the Church of England from St. Mildred's Breadstreet. With him are:
Tho. BASSETT, 37; Tho. STYLES, 20; Tho. BARBER, 21; Jo. DYER, 28; Jo. Harris, 28; Jas. Horwood, 30; Jo. REEVES, 19; Thos. Foulfoot, 22; Jas. Busket, 28; Thos. COOP., 18; Ed. PRESTON, 13; Jo. Cribb, 30; Geo. CHAPPEL, 20; Robert Robinson, 45; Edward PATTESON, 33; Fr. Marshall, 30; Rich. Heylei, 22; Tho. Halford, 20; Tho. Haukesworth, 23; Jo. STILES, 35; Henrie STILES, 40; Jane Worden, 30; Joan STILES, 35; Henry STILES, 3; Jo. STILES, 9 mo.; Rachell STILES, 28.

[Henry R. Stiles, The History of Ancient Windsor (Somersworth, N.H.: New Hampshire Pub. Co., 1976), Vol. 1, p. 44. The names in capitals are those of persons positively known to have settled in Windsor, according to Stiles.]

The History of Ancient Windsor details the story of this company of "servants" to Sir Richard SALTONSTALL, led by Francis STILESon p. 43-59. Suffice it to say here that STILES was a man of consequence, always called Master (Mr.) in the Connecticut records. According to Stiles, op. cit., p. 58, Francis STILES returned to England (probably in the winter of 1636-1637) and came back to Connecticut probably in spring 1637. No record has been found of this voyage, but it seems likely that his wife and child or children returned with him (unless of course they had already joined him on another unknown voyage). He remained in Windsor for some years, but in a deed of 12 Sept. 1647 he is called "Francis STILES, late of Windsor, but now of Saybrook" [Henry R. Stiles, The Stiles Family in America (1895), p. 462]. Henry Stiles, in the latter work, p. 469, citing a court case in the Particular Court of Connecticut, shows that Francis STILES was resident in Stratford in Mar. 1654. Between those two dates he may have been in Windsor again, since on the same page last cited Mr. Stiles quotes a record to the effect that Francis STILLS had 4 children born in Windsor. Since he thinks that Benjamin was the 4th child, and it is known that Benjamin was born around 1651, it seems that STILES must have been in Windsor in 1651.

Conclusion of the above evidence: EH could have met Francis STILES in Windsor, in Stratford, in Saybrook, or, of course, in some other, as yet unknown, place.

The most recent treatment of the family of Francis STILES is that by Donald L. Jacobus in his History and Genealogy of the Families of Old Fairfield (Baltimore: Genealogical Pub. Co., 1976) I:584-585:
Research Report No. 9
20 June 1993

by Barry Elmore Hinman)