Mary Royce AKA Mary Staples

b. 1634 - d. 1696

Accused of Witchcraft

My Maternal 9th Great Grandmother

Who Is Mary Royce Staples?

My 9th great grandmother, Mary Royce was

born in 1634, in Martock, Somerset, England.


She married Thomas Staples.


Mary died in 1696.

Transcribed from:
"History and Genealogies of the Families of Old Fairfield"
by Donald Linus Jacobus.

The descendants of Thomas Staples of the Town of Fairfield, CT (1639) 

(1). Thomas Staples
Deputy (Fairfield) to Conn. Leg., Sept. 1650, Oct. 1661.
Was an original settler of Fairfield, 1639. In 1653 when Goody Knapp was tried and executed as a witch, Thomas’ wife Mary placed herself under suspicion, to which her unusual intelligence had already made her liable, by expressing doubt, for example "it was long before she could believe this poor women was a witch, or that there were any witches, till the word of God convinced her.” Mr. Ludlow reported the suspicions of her to Rev. Mr. Davenport, but Thomas Staples boldly brought the matter to an issue by suing Mr. Ludlow for slander in the New Haven Colony Court, which awarded him damages of £ 10 . In 1692, during the witchcraft epidemic, Mrs. Staples was accused again, together with her daughter Mary Harvey and grand daughter, Hannah Harvey, but no evidence sufficient for indictment was produced.

( The Bible affords support to the belief in witchcraft. Accused witches in colonial times were usually either weak-minded women, or else of a superior mental endowment, which made them seem eccentric in the eyes of their contemporaries.)

In 1664 Winthrop treated Staples' wife of Fairfield and the children, specifying their ages thus: Mary 18, Mehitabel 12-13, Hester 8, John 5.
The estate of Thomas was settled, 12 Jan. 1688 [1688/9] by arbitrators between Mary, widow of Thomas Staples, Sr., Thomas Staples, Mehitabel Staples, and John Staples, and Mr. Josiah Harvey and John Beach in right of their now wives.
Will of Mary Staples, 12 Sept. 1696; sons Thomas, John; daughters Mary, wife of Josiah Harvey and Hannah, wife of John Beach; friend Widow Mary Slawson, as a token of my love, for her kindness to me; gr. child Hannah Harvey; gr. child Mehitabel Fanton; to Nathan Gold, a book by Dr. Preston. ( Not recorded;
from Files.)

Children of Thomas and Mary Staples:
1. Mary, born about, 1646; married Josiah Harvey.
Mehitabel, born about, 1651, died by 1693; married after 1688, Jonathan Fanton.
2. Thomas, born, Mar. 1650/1, (if g, s. is correctly read).
3. Hester, born about 1656, died young,
4. Hannah born [say 1659]; married (Rec. Stratford), 18 Dee, 1679, John Beach.
5. John, b, about 1663.


My Relationship Mary Royce Staples

Mary Royce b. 1634  d. 1696

My Maternal 9th Great Grandmother

Mary Staples ( b. ?- d. ?)
My Maternal 8th Great Grandmother

Daughter of Mary Royce

Isaac Beach ( b. 1669- d. 1741)
My Maternal 7th Great Grandfather

Son of Mary Staples

Mary Beach ( b. 1703- d. 1775)
My Maternal 6th Great Grandmother

Daughter of Isaac Beach

Hannah Wilcox ( b. ?- d. ? )
My Maternal 5th Great Grandmother

Daughter of Mary Beach

Elisha Collins ( b. 1762- d. 1854 )
My Maternal 4th Great Grandfather

Son of Hannah Wilcox

Anson Collins ( b. 1787- d. 1871 )
My Maternal 3rd Great Grandfather

Son of Elisha Collins

Charles Madison Collins ( b. 1835- d. 1909 )
My Maternal 2nd Great Grandfather

Son of Anson Collins

Cary Frank Collins ( b. 1871- d. ? )
My Maternal Great Grandfather

Son of Charles Madison Collins

Lee Orville Collins ( b. 1904- d. ? )
My Maternal Grandfather

Son of Cary Frank Collins

LIVING Collins ( b. - d. LIVING )
My Mother

Daughter of Lee Orville Collins

Cynthia Jean Meyers-Germany

Daughter of LIVING Collins

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