Family Bible of Samuel Bradford and Ann Williams of Philidelphia, 1783
A stunning large 18th century Family Bible, in need of some restoration, notable for the detailed and moving Family register across seven pages of the Bradford family of Boston, MA and Philadelphia, PA.
Covering several generations, and beginning with the marriage of Samuel Bradford to Ann Williams, both of Boston, in October 1783. The Bible goes on to details the births, baptisms and deaths of their 10 children (“Our lovely Daughter Ann died, aged 13 years 11 months & days !!!!!!!!”, “It hath pleased almighty God to take from us by Death our amiable daughter Marianne. aged 15 years”“), as well as details of their parents and extended family members.
The register details Smallpox inoculations given to the children and the domestic servants in August 1792 (during the great Boston smallpox epidemic of the same year).
The Bible was then passed down a generation, into the Hands of tenth born child, Samuel Bradford the 3rd (b. 1803) and details in heartbreaking terms the births and almost immediate deaths of his first four children (“This morning we were blessed with a fine little Boy: but it pleased almighty God to remove him from from [sic] us 2 hours after birth”, “It hath pleased our Heavenly Parent this morning to bestow upon us a dear little girl. We call her Mary Louisa. […] Died – our dear child Mary Louisa this morning at 1 1/2 o’clock after remaining with us but ten days”).
The Register continues in 1893 with details of the deaths of extended family members before concluding in 1921 “Annie Bradford died in Philadelphia, Pa. She was the last survivor of the children of Samuel Bradford and Elizabeth Ann Wood. Russell Bradford, a Cousin”.
What happened to the Bible between Russell Bradford’s sign off, and it surfacing in England 90 years later remains a mystery, but this is one of the most moving family register’s I have ever seen and this really deserves to be reunited with the Bradford Family.