Baptism Certificate of John Rodgers Jewitt
obtained by our Dad when he traveled to England and visited St. Botolph's in 1973.
A few posts ago, we promised that Boston would become important later in
our Jewitt family history -- well here it is! John R. was born and baptised in Boston,
at St. Botolph's -- a beloved parish church boasting an ornate wooden interior
and a famous lantern tower.
St. Botolph's Church in Boston, Lincolnshire, England
According to our family tree, John's father, Edward Juitt (Jewitt) was from
our familiar stomping grounds of Grimsby, but Catherine Rodgers, John's mother
(whose name he was given as his middle name), was from Boston. So she had to
have been the motivation for Edward's move to Boston. Perhaps also he hoped to
get a change of scenery, and start anew following the death of his previous wife,
Margaret. But sadly, Catherine was to die as well -- as John relates to us in the
opening lines of his journal:
"I was born in Boston, a considerable borough town in Lincolnshire, in
Great Britain, on the 21st of May, 1783. My father, Edward Jewitt, was by
trade a blacksmith, and esteemed among the first in his line of business in
that place. At the age of three years I had the misfortune to lose my mother,
a most excellent woman who died in child-bed, leaving an infant daugher,
who, with myself, and an elder brother by a former marriage of my father,
constituted the whole of our family."
Edward Jewitt married again for a final time, and by all accounts his third wife,
Anne, was a very kind, affectionate and caring stepmother to John. In his journal
he describes her as a widow much younger than his father, "who had been brought
up in a superior manner, and was an amiable and sensible woman."
So though he was raised in a good supportive family, from his earliest days, John
had to learn to deal with loss as well as change. And as we will see in the next
post, he developed the character necessary to handle it well.
Ornate interior of St. Botolph's lantern tower.
Links to Related Sites
Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust
Rod Collins - Lincolnshire Thro' History, Life, Lens and Words
The Old Palace Lincoln - Elegant Bed and Breakfast
National Portrait Gallery - London
College of Arms
The Jewett Family of America
History and Geneaology of the Jewitts of America
Marvinas Bay Lodge
First Peoples of Canada