Joseph Bucklin Society Time Line 1600-1799

This Joseph Bucklin Society time line of history is not intended to be anything other than a list of a few historical events that the Bucklin Family or Joseph Bucklin Society members may find of interest in understanding events of which the Family or Society have special concern. It is an easy read, and will have additions from time to time. But, if you want a more elegant and longer timeline of some of the history events, we recommend as a good history site with a readable timeline of events leading up to the Revolutionary War.

1614. Adrian Block, exploring for the Dutch, explores the mouth of Narragansett Bay.

1630. William Bucklin leaves England and comes to New England with the Winthrop Fleet.

1633. The trial of Galileo, for his insistence that the earth revolves around the sun, which the Catholic Church denounced as repugnant to Holy Scripture. Think about this. This is the era of Europe in which William Bucklin came to the New World.

1634: William Blackstone was the first Rhode Island settler, in the area now known as the Blackstone River. .

1636. The Plymouth Colony, because of the pressure of increased population in the Plymouth area, established the town of Scituate. Because of the continuing pressure of the Plymouth area, and also because of the pressure of the Rhode Island settlers, the Plymouth Colony Court formed eight more new towns in the next ten years, including Rehoboth in 1641, noted below.

1636. Roger Williams first settles on the East side of the Seekonk River. Under pressure from the Massachusetts colonies of Plymouth and Massachusetts Bay, Williams moves west. In 1636, Roger Williams founds Providence Plantation settlement. (See 1663 entry for combination of the Providence Plantation and Rhode Island settlements as a formal colony of England.)

1638. Anne Hutchinson founds Portsmouth.

1639: The Newport Compact, which formed the basis of the Rhode Island settlement, was signed.

1641. The Plymouth Court grants Reverend Newman and his congregation the privilege of buying the eight square miles tract lying between the Seekonk and Palmer Rivers. Newman names the settlement Rehoboth, and it is officially recognized and incorporated by the Plymouth Court, in 1645.

1643. The Plymouth court orders that individual settlers were forbidden to purchase land from the Indians without formal authorization by the General Court.

1643: Without authorization from the Plymouth Court. Samuel Gorton buys land from the Indians and founded Shawomet, Rhode Island’s fourth settlement. The town was named Warwick a few years later in honor of the Earl of Warwick.

1643. By this time most towns in the Plymouth and Massachusetts colonies were using a town meeting of all resident householders to debate and vote “orders” relevant to common needs. A variety of executive committees (selectmen) and officers such as surveyors of highways, constables, and ad hoc committees were appointed to perform tasks. These institutions arose spontaneously, based on the English model, without provision in the laws of the Colony.

1644. Roger Williams receives a patent from the English Parliament, then in revolt against the King, to united the four existing towns as the Rhode Island Colony and give it legal status, protecting it against the Massachusetts Bay Colony and the Plymouth Colony, which were considering forcible annexation.

1645. William Bucklin has 600 acres in the area of Pawtucket Falls, East of Providence.

1663: Charles II granted the Charter of Rhode Island & Providence Plantations July 8. It remained the constitution until 1842.

1656. Joseph Jencks, a skilled iron worker, who was attracted by the Blackwood Valley’s abundant wood, water power and proximity of bog iron, erected a dwelling and forge in what would be the future city of Pawtucket.

June, 1675. King Phillips War begins with the Indian attack on Swansea. On March 26 a large war party led by chief sachem Canonchet massacred a company of approximately sixty-five Englishmen and twenty friendly Indians led by Captain Michael Pierce on the banks of the Blackstone a few miles north of the William Bucklin lands in present Pawtucket, Rhode Island. Three days later the victorious Narragansetts descended upon Providence, burning most of the buildings in the town.

1676. Between 5 to 8 percent of the adult men of the Plymouth Colony were killed in the King Phillips war. In November, 1676, the decisive battle in King Philip’s War was fought against the Narragansett. The Indians were wholly defeated, with King Phillip killed, his body quartered and left to rot, and his captured warriors and families sold into slavery in the West Indies.

1686. The charters of the colonies were cancelled by King Charles/ Charles declared Massachusetts Bay, Plymouth, Rhode Island, and Connecticut colonies to be a single royal dominion, the “Dominion of New England”.

October, 1691. The Glorious Revolution in England leads to the cancellation of King Charles’ “Dominion of New England” and the issuance of a new charter for Massachusetts Bay, which included an annexation of Plymouth Colony into the Massachusetts Colony.

1692: The Salem Witchcraft Trials.

1 January 1699. The Abenaki Indians and the Massachusetts colonists sign a treaty ending the conflict in New England.

1699. The first clearly reported epidemic of yellow fever in the colonies kills one-sixth of the population in Philadelphia.

1708: Rhode Island’s first census taken; population 7,181.

1720. Rhode Island population about 12,000

1730: Census taken; population 17,935.

1748: Census taken; population 32,773.

1750. Rhode Island is heavily involved in the triangular trade of sugar and molasses from the West Indies, to Rhode Island where it is made into rum, to Africa where the rum is traded for slaves, to the West Indies where the slaves are traced for more sugar and molasses — with a profit at each corner of the trade being accumulated from sale of the “excess” for (usually) cash or letters of credit good for getting goods from English merchants. It is estimated that about 90 percent of all slaves to the colonies were brought by Rhode Island ships.

1755: Rhode Island census taken; population 40,414.

1756 – 1763. The French and Indian War. The issue was the Ohio River Valley trade and settlement. The French had built a line of forts west of the colonized land of the northern English colonies, e.g., Fort Duquesne. This Seven Years War ends by the “Treaty of Paris”. The French lost Canada and the American Midwest. British tightened colonial administration in North America and increased military presence. Royal Proclamation established a Proclamation Line of 1763 to form a closed Indian Reserve (land west of Appalachians) to settlers in an attempt to solve the Indian problem and colonist claims of unlimited territory. In short, land over the mountains is off limits to the Americans.

1765. Rhode Island population about 50,000. Rhode Island merchants owned 500 ships, and abut 12,000 men were employed as sailors or directly with ships.

1764: The British try to recoup come of their war expenses from the Severn Years War (French and Indian War) by the North American Revenue (Sugar) Act of 1764 and the Currency Act. Duties were imposed on coffee, wines, sugar, etc. Duties are lowered from those of the Molasses Act of 1733 from 6d to 3d, but this act tightens up on collection; authorizes Vice Admiralty Courts which take the place of jury trials; Judges terms are changed to “at the pleasure of the Crown”. The Currency Act prohibits “legal tender” paper in Virginia. Sugar Act placed duties on lumber, foodstuffs, molasses and rum in colonies, to pay French and Indian War debts.

1765: Quartering Act. The British Quartering Act required the colonies to provide barracks and supplies to British troops.

1765: Stamp Act. Parliament’s first direct tax on the American colonies was enacted to raise money for Britain. It taxed newspapers, almanacs, pamphlets, broadsides, legal documents, dice, and playing cards. Issued by Britain, the stamps were affixed to documents or packages to show that the tax had been paid.

American colonists responded to Parliament’s acts of 1765 with organized protest. In the colonies, secret organizations known as the Sons of Liberty sprang up, aimed at intimidating the stamp agents who collected Parliament’s taxes. The Sons of Liberty were effective. Before the Stamp Act could even take effect, all the appointed stamp agents in the colonies had resigned.

The Massachusetts Assembly suggested a meeting of all the colonies to work for the repeal of the Stamp Act. All but four colonies were represented. The Stamp Act Congress passed a “Declaration of Rights and Grievances,” which claimed that American colonists were equal to all other British citizens, protested taxation without representation, and stated that, without colonial representation in Parliament, Parliament could not tax colonists. In addition, the colonists increased their nonimportation efforts.

1766 Stamp Act repealed by England in large part of the English merchants’ distress from the loss of American business.

1767. Parliament enacts a series of measures introduced into Parliament by Chancellor of the Exchequer Charles Townshend. The Townshend Acts imposed duties on glass, lead, paints, paper, and tea imported into the colonies and created a Board of Customs Commissioners to enforce customs laws without the accused having recourse to a trial by jury.

Townshend hoped the acts would defray imperial expenses of keeping the military forces necessary in the colonies as a result of the French presence in North America. Because Americans had argued against Parliament’s power to impose the Stamp Act on the ground that it was a direct tax by a legislature in which they had no representatives, Parliament thought the colonists would accept Parliament’s right to regulate trade and impose an indirect tax of an import duty, a wishful misunderstanding of colonial opinion.

But Americans believed that Parliament had no right to impose any taxes at all on the colonists, viewing taxation as an abuse of Great Britain’s constitutional relationship with the colonies.

1768: Massachusetts issued a Circular Letter describing the idea of not importing goods to protest the Townshend Acts. In response, the British governor of Massachusetts dissolved the state’s legislature. British Troops were sent to Boston and garrisoned there.

1769: Virginia’s Resolutions. The Virginia House of Burgesses passed resolutions condemning Britain’s actions against Massachusetts, and stating that only Virginia’s governor and legislature could tax its citizens. The members also drafted a formal letter to the King, completing it just before the legislature was dissolved by Virginia’s royal governor.

1770.The 1768 Massachusetts Circular Letter had led to a series of Non-Importation Agreements by other colonies, which in turn lead to a 50% reduction of colonial imports from Britain in 1768-1769 by half. Parliament, in response to demands from its merchants, suffering from the lack of purchases from America, repealed all the Townshend duties except the tax on tea, which it retained in order to assert its right to tax the colonies.

1770 Boston Massacre. The arrival of troops in Boston provoked conflict between citizens and soldiers. On March 5, a group of soldiers surrounded by an unfriendly crowd opened fire, killing three Americans and fatally wounding two more. More violence by the Americans was avoided by the withdrawal of the troops to a garrison island in the harbor. The soldiers were tried for murder, but convicted only of lesser crimes; noted patriot John Adams was their principal lawyer.

June 10, 1772. Capture and burning of the Gaspee. Committees of correspondence begin in Massachusetts and spread rapidly.

1773 . The Boston Tea Party becomes a symbol of patriotic protest and rebellion, but to some it looks like random property violence against a disinterested party, a reckless act that destroys thousands of pounds worth of private merchandise. In any case, it causes King George to lose whatever sympathy he may have had for the colonial cause. Things go downhill rapidly from here on.

1774 “Intolerable Acts.” In response to the Boston Tea Party, Parliament passed several acts to punish Massachusetts. The Boston Port Bill banned the loading or unloading of any ships in Boston harbor. The Administration of Justice Act offered protection to royal officials in Massachusetts, allowing them to transfer to England all court cases against them involving riot suppression or revenue collection. The Massachusetts Government Act put the election of most government officials under the control of the Crown, essentially eliminating the Massachusetts charter of government.

First Continental Congress: To protest Britain’s actions, Massachusetts suggested a return to nonimportation, but several states preferred a congress of all the colonies to discuss united resistance. The colonies soon named delegates to a congress — the First Continental Congress — to meet in Philadelphia on September 5. Twelve of the thirteen colonies (Georgia was the holdout) sent a total of fifty-six delegates to the First Continental Congress. The Congress adopted the Massachusetts idea and passed the Association of 1774, which urged all colonists to avoid using British goods, and to form committees to enforce this ban.

1774: The Connecticut and Rhode Island colonies prohibited further importation of slaves into their colonies. Rhode Island was the main importer of slaves and ran most of the slave ships from the United States.

1774. Rhode Island census taken; population 57,707.

1774: British troops began to fortify Boston, and seized ammunition belonging to the colony of Massachusetts. Massachusetts created a Provincial Congress, and a special Committee of Safety to decide when the militia should be called into action. Special groups of militia, known as Minute Men, were organized to be ready for instant action.

1775 Lord North’s plan for reconciliation is rejected; Massachusetts is declared to be in a state of rebellion. The colonists begin stockpiling stores, powder. General Gage is instructed to arrest leaders and seize stores.

April 19, 1775. General Gage sends 700 men to capture stores at Concord. Americans, warned by Revere and Dawes, assemble at Lexington green and shots break out, killing 8 and wounding 10. More militia (minutemen) gather at Concord Bridge—the British are forced to retreat to Boston, suffering over 100 killed along the way.

1775. April. A week after the skirmishes at Lexington and Concord, the Rhode Island colonial legislature authorized raising a 1,500-man ”army of observation” with Nathaniel Greene as its commander. The Rhode Island men assembled outside Boston by the end of the month.

The Second Continental Congress. The Second Continental Congress convened in Philadelphia on May 10. John Hancock was elected president of Congress.

On June 10, John Adams proposed that Congress consider the forces from the various colonies, now assembled outside Boston, a Continental army, and suggested the need for a general. He recommended George Washington for the position. Congress began to raise men from other colonies to join the army in New England, and named a committee to draft military rules.

Bunker Hill. On June 12, British General Gage put martial law in effect, and stated that any person helping the Americans would be considered a traitor and rebel. When Americans began to fortify a hill against British forces, British ships in the harbor discovered the activity and opened fire. British troops — 2,400 in number — arrived shortly after. Although the Americans — 1,000 in number — resisted several attacks, eventually they lost the fortification.

On June 15, Washington was nominated to lead the army; he accepted the next day. To pay for the army, Congress issued bills of credit, and the twelve colonies represented in the Congress promised to share in repaying the bills.

Olive Branch Petition. Congress issued a petition declaring its loyalty to the king, George III, and stating its hope that he would help arrange a reconciliation and prevent further hostilities against the colonies. Four months later, King George III rejected the petition and declared the colonies in rebellion.

1776. May 4, 1776, Rhode Island became the first colony to renounce allegiance to King George III and declare its independence. May: capture of Ft. Ticonderoga (upstate NY). June: Battle of Bunker Hill; Continental Congress named Washington commander-in-chief.

1776 Richard Henry Lee of Virginia proposes that the Continental Congress gathered at Philadelphia approve a declaration of independence. July 4: Second Continental Congress approved document prepared by Thomas Jefferson. British troops evacuated Boston and move to New York where in August, Washington lost Battle of Long Island and evacuated New York.

July 18, 1776 Rhode Island Assembly ratified the Declaration of Independence.

1776. Until 1779, Newport, RI, was occupied by the British.

1777 British General Burgoyne surrendered at Saratoga NY. Articles of Confederation approved by Congress. France recognized independence of 13 colonies.

1778 Continental Army suffered hardships in winter camp at Valley Forge PA. France declares war on Britain; French support arrives, led by Major General de Lafayette.

1778. In Newport, American Generals John Sullivan and Lafayette won a partial victory, but failed to oust the British

1779, October, British forces evacuated Newport and the rest of Rhode Island. Thereafter until the end of the Revolutionary War, French troops under General Rochambeau were stationed in Rhode Island.

1779 Main theater of fighting shifts to the South.

1780 Charleston fell to British. Benedict Arnold, American commander and hero of Saratoga, found to be a traitor, made general of British army.

1781 Cornwallis surrendered at Yorktown (Oct 19).

1782: Rhode Island census taken; population 52,347.

1782 New British cabinet agrees to recognize U.S. independence.

1783 Treaty of Paris signed Sept 3. Noah Massachusetts Supreme Court declares slavery to be illegal.

1784 Jefferson’s proposal to ban slavery in the territories acquired in the Treaty of Paris is narrowly defeated in Continental Congress.

1784: Rhode Island passed Emancipation act, providing for gradual abolition of existing slavery. All children born after March 1, 1784, were free.

1786 Virginia adopts Thomas Jefferson’s statute to ban future slavery.

1787 Shays’s Rebellion in Western MA failed. Constitutional Convention opened at Philadelphia (May 25). U.S. Constitution passed (Sept 17).

1788 Alexander Hamilton, James Madison, and John Jay published The Federalist. Ratification of Constitution by 9th state, NH, meant adoption.

1789 Constitution went into effect March 4. Congress began session at New York (April 6).

1790: In Pawtucket, the first successful United States water powered cotton mill was established by Samuel Slater and David Wilkinson. Although the British lost dominion over the American colonies during the Revolutionary War, they fought hard not to lose their commercial preeminence as well. Britain particularly worked to prevent the export of technology or technicians. Yet Samuel Slater, formerly employed as a middle manager at mills in England, was able to use his knowledge to establish America’s first successful water-wheeled textile mill. Upon his arrival in America, Slater was contacted by Providence merchant Moses Brown, who, with several colleagues, was attempting to duplicate the Arkwright system used in England. A working set of mechanical spinning machines for the entrepreneurs was in operation in Pawtucket in 1790. In 1793 the thriving spinning operation moved into a new, larger building known today as the Slater Mill Historic Site. More than any other single event, this successful transplantation of the Arkwright factory system can be said to mark the birth of the American Industrial Revolution and the transformation of American life and character from agriculture into manufacturing.

May 29, 1790 (Rhode Island became the 13th of the original 13 states to ratify the Constitution).

1791 Bill of Rights effective Dec 15. Vermont admitted to Union.

1792 Washington reelected president. Kentucky admitted to Union.

1793 Eli Whitney invented cotton gin.

1794 Whiskey Rebellion in western Pennsylvania. General (“Mad Anthony”) Wayne’s forces rout Miami Indians in the Battle of Fallen Timbers (near present-day Toledo OH).

1796 Tennessee admitted to Union.

1798 XYZ Affair. Alien & Sedition Acts passed by Federalists, intended to silence political opposition. War with France threatened over French raids on U.S. shipping and rejection of U.S. diplomats. Naval skirmishes saw U.S. vessels victorious. — Virginia and Kentucky Resolutions.

21 March 1799. The militia of Pennsylvania is federalized to put down the armed insurrection against the property taxes of the federal government.

14 December, 1799. George Washington dies, with a unified United States of America as a legacy.

1800 Federal government moves from Philadelphia to Washington DC. Gabriel Prosser leads slave rebellion in VA.