Update: I’ve finally found a copier big enough to fit this entire document and produce a high-resolution image to share. So, I’m updating this post with the new pictures. See the new file below in all its glory!
John is a 1st Grandson of Phillip Babb of the Isles of Shoals having been born to Phillip’s 5th son Peter (1-5) & Sarah Cate. John witnessed this deed of a friend’s land transaction on 16 Sep 1743 and signed it accordingly.
The Original Deed has come up for sale on eBay and I snapped it up. A find of this early date is exceedingly rare and the chance to own an original signature of one of our nation’s Babb founders is unprecedented. These things are usually locked away in court houses and archives. I have no idea how this batch got freed up, but I wanted to take no chance at securing it for the Association. The original is on its way to me now, but in the meantime, I have these images from the eBay listing.
The document is very legible and it’s fun to see all that you got for 5 Pounds of British Sterling in those days.
More Info about John
From Jean A. Sargent’s Babb Families of America, we find:
In about 1728 John and brother James went to Scarborough, ME (then part of MA).
On 19 Mar 1727-8 Charles Pine of Scarborough sold for b120 (pounds) in bills of credit 100 acres in said town above Dunston, and 1/3 of a double sawmill and 20 acres of marsh to John Babb, James Babb, John Fabian, and William Berry, all of Portsmouth. It was on both sides of the brook above the first falls on Dunston River, and was land that had been given to John Wentworth, Hezekiah Phillips and Phillip Duly (York Co. Deeds Vol. 12, p. 251).
In 1739 Henry Bennett of Portsmouth gave his beloved daughter Frances Bab (sic) five shillings (Prov. Papers of NH, Vol. 32, p. 749).
On 26 May and 12 Jun 1742, John, an inhabitant of Biddeford and Scarborough, petitioned for the town of Buxton, then called “Narragansett Number 1.” It was on the east side of the Saco River, adjoining Biddeford and Saco. There were 62 petitioners who asked for it. It had been granted to men who had not performed the requirement of settling on the land (Col. & Proc. of ME Hist. Soc. 2nd Series, Vol. 8, p. 245; or Documentary Vol. 11, p. 245).
John held many responsible positions governing the affairs of Scarborough. He was surveyor of highways 1735-6; field driver and fence viewer 1737-8, 1738-9, 1752; constable (tax collector) 1744-5; surveyor of lumber 1739-40, 1740-1, 1741-2, 1742, 1743-4, 1746, 1749-50, 1754, 1755, 1756. He had care of the meetinghouse 1754-5. He was allowed 8 shillings to repair the town pound at Dunstan (Donstow), part of Scarborough (Scarborough Town Records).
On 8 Feb 1761 John and Frances Babb sold 100 acres with a house in Scarborough to Daniel Merrill of the same town (Cumberland Co., ME Deeds Vol. 2, p. 100). On 22 Dec 1772 for 18 pounds John sold to Thomas Babb [son] 30 acres, which was half of lot #35 laid out to John in the division of 5,000 acres of Scarborough (Recorded 8 Oct 1814, Cumberland Co., ME Deeds Vol. 71, p. 52).
In the “History of Scarborough” it states that a. John Babb and a Nathaniel Babb “were at Dunstan early,” Dunstan being a tract between the Scarborough and Nonesuch Rivers (“History of Scarborough” by Wm. S. Southgate). We do not know to what Nathaniel they refer, and believe that it was John and James, and may also have been confused with Nathaniel Knight who married their sister Priscilla Babb and went to Scarborough in 1720.