King Charles 1st "That Man of Blood" meets his End !

Joseph Pride
Executioner of the Tyrant !
King Charles 1st of England Scotland and Wales
Pioneer of Prides Corner Maine

Page Updates Masting, Burials, Fire, Willis, Purinton ! Hunter

On 6 December 1648, at the end of the English Civil War, Colonel Thomas Pride and his soldiers stood outside the entrance to St Stephen's Chapel in the House of Commons of England and, as the Commons convened that morning, arrested 45 Members and excluded a further 186 Royalists. It is known in history as "Prides Purge". On 6 January 1649, the remaining members of parliament, called the rump parliament, established a court to try Charles I for high treason. The court later executed the King, beheading him in public in front of Whitehall as Oliver Cromwell and thousands of others looked on. The identity of the executioner, hidden in a hood, wig, and grotesque fake beard, is officially unknown. But Family legend has now been confirmed by a riddle left by Oliver Cromwell, six massachusetts baptismal records from 1686, a clear direct statement by King Charles the 2nd (one which also reveals the crowns reasons for hiding the identity for three centuries) and incredibly revealing datasets from the new Ancestry.com release (9/26/23). Joseph Pride, founder of Prides Corner, Maine was the executioner.

Sir Thomas Pride

A decade after the purge, in 1658, General Thomas Pride, Knighted Grandee of Oliver Cromwell's victorious New Model Army, and member of the House of Lords, died. Two years later, after the English Restoration of King Charles's son King Charles 2nd in 1660, his body was ordered dug up and posthumously executed, suspended on the gallows at Tyburn along with those of Oliver Cromwell, Henry Ireton and John Bradshaw, though it is said that the sentence was not carried out because his corpse was too far decayed. The Royalists thereupon attempted to hang his son, Joseph Pride, who barely escaped.

According to Prides Corner family legend the escape from the Kings men had a dramatic and ironic twist.

Red Coats hot on his heels,... Joseph ran down a hill, out a dock, and dove into the sea and swam to a longboat that had already departed the Dock. Purely by luck, it was the last longboat to the ship which was setting sail to the New World and he got away.

The legend also stated that every Generations first born that followed was named Joseph in honor of the unsung puritan hero, the executioner of King Charles 1st.

She seems fond of 'debauchery'.

Joseph's initial refuge in the mast road area was no accident and it was not random. His father Lord Pride had become fabulously wealthy as a supplier of lumber and building materials used to build the British Fleet and the beer, victuals and supplies to sustain it throughout the 1650's. Lord Pride, a commander of soldiers of foot, was so central to the British Navy Establishment that he was to be named Commander of the Entire Fleet if Admiral Blake had not survived the fever in 1653. In 1649, the year of the execution, he purchased the entire Nonsuch Forest for shipbuilding materials for the fleet, and immediately stripped it of 6000 trees in a few years. It was likely his crews of puritan civil war veterans that began the harvest of Duck Ponds old growth in the early 1650's. Duck Pond masts were the lowest hanging fruit and Masting had really taken off in the 1640's. In 1652 there was a Naval Mast crisis resulting from the Baltic crisis of 1652-53. The fleet dispatched its own Mast ships to meet the emergency, likely crewed by the experienced and available lumberjacks from the Lord Prides recently denuded Nonsuch Forest. They returned every year for a decade before the Mast Agent system began.

Whomever cut it, Highland Lake Masting created safe, extremely remote, cleared land of the finest farming quality, functional transport both out for lumber and masts and in for supplies, not to mention 1000 pounds of silver coins. Masting was done in winter and would require wells to water the animals and work crews involved, hovels for the Oxen, and thrown up lodgings for the crew. The history of the Masting industry makes it clear, this area was already masted and vacant in 1661, and most likely masted by people the fugitive Joseph would have known well. Joseph spent his teenage years on the Nonsuch estate while it was being logged. Duck Pond was the perfect hideout for the most wanted man in the world in 1661, and it may have come with an established support system.

Joseph Pride thereafter hid in Prides Corner Maine for 26 years as the King of England and the entire British Empire sought him to kill him, and then he emerged to baptize the six children he and Jane Pride successfully raised on the shores of Highland Lake in the wilderness of Maine. They traveled with six small children on empty winter roads, avoiding the Red Coats, to the First Church in Beverly Mass Dec 12, 1686, one year after his persuer Charles 2nd had died, and the fury of the hunt had provably lessened. The Executioner's son Joseph registered a parcel of land in Falmouth/Westbrook now known as Prides Corner Maine 40 years later in 1726, the year land registrations began.

The Executioner's son is also likely referred to in a contemporary article by Parson Smith noting the death of "Old Man Pride" that year (1747) at the age of between 61 to 73 as the baptisim date is all we have. One backward looking article from 1895 cites "The Joseph Pride to whom this tract of 100 acres was granted was 'most likely' the first person of the name in the area", and somewhat mysteriously that "he 'probably' was in mid life when he emigrated to this vicinity, but that persons of that name still reside, having acquired their homes by inheritance from ancestors who have long been domiciled with our present town limits". It also states that "On April 12, 1726 Joseph and Sarah Pride had a son Joseph born in Falmouth". The Joseph born in 1726, the executioner's grandson, would go on to become Captain Joseph Pride in George Washington's Continental Navy where he served with his oldest son Joseph Pride Jr (Thomas, Joseph, Joseph, Joseph's, Joseph), and his youngest teenager, John Pride.

1790 Falmouth Census

The Pride lineage of Prides Corner, is one first born Joseph Pride after another, every generation across FOUR (4) centuries. From his birth in 1637, there is a living first born Joseph in his honor in every US census up to 1900 (see Ancestry.com links below). It is the Pride family's silent testimony to its history, the only safe testimony possible for such a hunted figure at first, and as centuries passed,... for a forgotten one. The 1790 Census for Falmouth, Maine for example lists Henry, Joseph, William, and a second Joseph, a Joseph for each generation, (1822)

1820 Falmouth Census

The 1820 census gives a tantalizing glimpse into the family secret listing both a Thomas, another Joseph, and another Henry and William. Multiple second born Thomas, Henry, John, and William Prides occurring over the the years are noted. They are the same Family Names throughout the 263 years of first born Josephs. Lord Thomas Pride's sons were Thomas, William, John, Samuel and Joseph, daughter Elizabeth and uncle Henry. This puritan revolutionary family's determination to leave a mark over multiple generations of Joseph always first, not General, Grandee, and Knighted, Sir Thomas is a powerful statement of determination by multiple generations in multiple family branches.

First born Josephs in the Census

1637...   1790   1800   1810   1820   1830   1840   1850   1860   1870   1880   1890   1900  

Family Names in the Census

1637...   1790   1800   1810   1820   1830   1840   1850   1860   1870   1880   1890   1900  

Thomas Prides genealogy

The escape story makes sense in this light. The preference of the name Joseph over one of the greats of your religion and cause,... lends credence to the rest, but there is more.

Great effort was taken to hide the identity of the executioner. Many guesses were later made, most naming prominent puritans like Hugh Peters. But all were accounted for. Soldiers lined the platform to obscure the view, the executioner was obviously somebody they wanted to protect. The executioner wore a wig and a grotesque fake beard. The executioner held the head aloft but flubbed his lines and did not say the traditional "behold the head of a traitor", and then unceremoniously dropped the king's head into the crowd (two strong indicators of inexperience). The fake beard, the total silence, and the flubbed performance may support the story further. From the evidence we have, Joseph was still a boy in 1649 and it may have been necessary to hide his lack of a beard to avoid recognition as well as his childs voice. His actual birth date is unknown, but the evidence we have indicates he was 12 or 13 years old in 1649, and not the super skilled executioner favorites such as Anne Boleyn got and bragged about. Was this just a measure of thier contempt for Charles 1st? The 200,000 deaths Charles 1st caused were Maces bashing heads in, swords slashing throats, blood and terror everywhere. That's why history hung the moniker "That Man of Blood" around what was left of his neck after Joseph got done with him.

But if he indeed was that young, how could such a decision be arrived at? Was there more than just their contempt for Charles ? The circumstances offer a possible explanation and a very strong validating hint. Oliver Cromwell, famous for his puns, crude practical jokes, and riddles,... left a last riddle for posterity and now we know what it was.

Firstly, you are dealing with the religious zealot Oliver Cromwell here. Second the impetus would had to have originated with the boy Joseph. The regular puritan executioner refused £200 pounds to do it,... no one wanted the job. They all knew the wrath of the royalists would follow the axe man all his days. Colonel John Hewson was given the task of finding an executioner and he offered 40 soldiers the position of executioner or assistant in exchange for £100 and quick promotion, though none came forward.

The puritans make no secret of the rejection by 40 soldiers for an executioner or assistant, they actually seem to promote it even. It would seem an odd point for them to put into history*, but then there is this...

Twice a day for 40 days, morning and evening, Goliath, the champion of the Philistines, comes out between the lines and challenges the Israelites to send out a champion of their own to decide the outcome in single combat, but Saul is afraid.

The first army of the living God had declined to fight 40 times in pairs (morning and evening), so it seems did the army of Oliver Cromwell (executioner or assistant). Both Goliath and Charles were alike accused of defying the armies of the living God. Only the boy David stepped forward to represent the first army of the living God, and only the boy Joseph for the second ? Did at this point the boy make an impassioned plea to be the David of the Age, to step forward where no other would?

The religious parallels at the most religious of moments for the puritans would have been an intoxicating brew for the devout. It is the only possible path by which to arrive at such a selection... and the pieces fit so well.

1 Samuel 17:25 The king will give great wealth to the man who kills him (Goliath). He will also give him his daughter in marriage and will exempt his family from taxes in Israel.”

in the riddle called...

(£100 and quick promotion)

King Charles 2nd reputedly told his life long mistress, Louise de Kérouaille, Duchess of Portsmouth, the executioner was "Pride" but it is unclear what was said (see page image). For over three hundred and fifty plus years now the literati have always assumed he meant Thomas Pride. However, because Thomas was seen unmasked on the stage, the King's comment has been rejected and ignored with exaggerated distain. But it is unknown if he actually said Thomas Pride or just Pride ? Charles 2nd's soldiers detained, jailed, and tortured or executed almost the entire puritan leadership, and made deals with the rest for clemancy. Any candidate for executioner, it would seem, needs to address the reason for the Crowns silence on what it knew, for they likely knew (...and know?) everything.

Ten years on with the flush of numerical revelations well in the past, the question has to be asked which of the parties left standing would have a motivation to reveal the truth in the year 1660 ? Does the David 2 story burnish the rejected puritan rule, or sound more like child murder ten years later? Does the Crown want it known it was a child that finished a King? Worse in a still largely puritan England does Charles 2nd want to promote a myth with Charles 1st in the role of Goliath and the new David still on the loose ? In 1660 all parties have strong motivations to not disclose the truth and the situation does not change thereafter. The reasons for the Crowns silence are now clear, the truth was both a challenge to the very concept of monarchy, a child killing a King, and a personal threat to Charles II himself, casting him in the role of usurper to the "new David".

The entire issue of the initial events once in America, is of course clouded and confused by the fugitive status under pain of death which discouraged accurate regicide identifying documentation in the strongest possible manner for over a century, even for descendants. During the American Revolution, Redcoats would regularly walk hundreds of miles just to spit on the gravestone of Regicide John Dixwell who died in 1689.

Maine records in the 1600's are sparse. Some lost to fire. However, Massachusetts records do record the birth of a Joseph Pride on 12 Dec 1686 in Beverly Essex. This is the anchor record for so many later references (such as the inept but widely quoted William Willis) to the parent Joseph of George Washington's Naval Captain Joseph Pride, as "arriving" from Beverly in 1726 at the age of 40. But Mass records also list an unlikely Six Prides being born on that very same day in tiny Beverly Essex. However the Massachusetts source for these official Massachusetts birth records are the church baptisms of the First Church. This source lists 50 pages of baptisms for the tiny hamlet of Beverly Essex before 1710. Most are single baptisms, with the occasional double, but the family of a John and Jane Pride are all registered the same day proving this family of six Pride children were coming from a great distance for baptisms that were greatly delayed in 1686. If not Prides Corner then from where? There simply are no other candidates, no other concentrations of the Pride name pre 1776 save Beverly itself. Why such an extreme delay in a puritan family risking eternal damnation for the children? Dying without Baptism was a very serious matter in the puritan world. Did the death of his persuer Charles 2nd the year before finally reduce the intensity of the search enough to finally allow the baptisms?

Joseph the executioner was born in 1637 in London and his brother John died at Birth. The names baptized Dec 12, 1686 for the mysterious "John" and Jane are names from Lord Prides family. For a deeply Religious fugitive in hiding, baptisms are where the rubber meets the road. They MUST BE BAPTIZED, his real name could bring down the crown on all of them (the hunt was still on), no name implies bastard and that would not do either. Joseph was caught between the proverbial rock (Death) and a hard place (Damnation).

There is a record of a John Pride marrying Jane Lovering in Beverly, during King Philips War in 1675, when Indians were killing colonists all over the east coast, especially in Maine. Assuming the newly weds returned to Maine for safety when it was safe in 1676, no local records have so far been uncovered of them (it was 1600's none expected,... and they were hiding) only deeds, grants and news articles of the six children, The same family names, including Jane begin to voluminously appear in Maine records right at the start with the first census and regular records (see ancestry links).

Fortunately for records of the 1600's in Maine, Puritan New England seems to have gotten married and baptized in the First Church until 1710. The names of all Six Children and spouses show up repeatedly in the Pre-Civil War Falmouth Maine Census Records ( John William Peter Joseph Mary Elizabeth ) while only Peter shows up in the Beverly Essex Pre-Civil War Census records. ( John William Peter Joseph Mary Elizabeth ) In powerful support for the winter baptisim pilgrimage with six small children all under 12 years old, the name Jane Pride, for the formerly Jane Lovering, also shows up repeatedly in Falmouth, Maine. My favorite is Mary Jane Pride combining the Executioner's daughter and wifes names in a "smokey concoction" in 1828 and again in 1854. There is a record of Elizabeth Pride, the executioners daughter, marrying a Lot Conant Sr, 14 Jun 1698 who also shows up in a 1727 falmouth Land Grant and the name of the married Elizabeth Conant shows up in Falmouth census records but not in Beverly. Geneologists all over the place are mistaking ceremonies performed at the First Church as residency which it is clearly not. Available data indicates that the number baptized before 1710 was triple or greater than the entire population of Beverly in 1710. With Marriges, Funerals and Holidays thrown in,... The First Church must have been a very busy place ! See: First Church records Analyzer Research Ongoing and the awesome earth shaking Ancestry.com is still updating and expanding.

Somewhat conclusively,...given Ancestry.com's level of comprehensiveness...Joseph is not listed on any passenger list (because he swam for it !). There is only one immigration record for last name Pride between 1600 and 1700 to New England. John Pride, 1637, Salem, Massachusetts who died in 1647 leaving three children and an entirely different trail of family names,.. not to mention providing the absolutely letter perfect Cover Name to have if the absolute top priority of the King of England and the entire British Empire for 50 years is to mount your head on a spike.

Rename Highland Lake to Joseph's Lake.
It was his refuge from
the Kings Vengence !

Prides Corner is a Place

Joseph Pride was Thomas Prides son, brother in-law of Oliver Cromwell's nephew, and brother-in-law of Naval Admiral Thomas Monk's daughter, definitely Puritan Royalty :) The man who landed here was at the very center the puritan movement, and it turns out, its history. In his will, General, now Lord Thomas Pride ignores normal protocol and does not leave everything to the first born son. He largely skips his two oldest sons leaving just five pounds each and leaves 4000 pounds, almost the entire estate, to his fifth born son Joseph who was still a minor when it was written. The reason for the largess to a teenager is not specified, but its all in cash. Joseph inherited the estate of an English Lord as a young man less than two years before he had to run for it, then he vanishes from British Records without a trace. There are No marriage, birth or death records and no Land Deeds. (Credit:Troy Bennett Bangor Daily News). The only known written records (using his given name) of his life so far are the multiple references in Lord Prides will.

The remains of his cabin, depicted on an early painted plate (circa 1725), were located at Mast and Pride farm road, neighbor to the Purintons. The area was plowed several years ago but was carefully examined beforehand finding residential foundation stones in the expected location, but no report has been forthcoming. The painted plate was handed down through the generations, along with the story, and is missing today. From the angle it may have been painted from the Purinton House roof. The plate itself was fractured into one inch square pieces in 1968 by me in a violent fight with my brother (the first one I won :), then meticulously reconstructed with a dark clay bonder. Its colors are predominantly yellow and blue/green.

Today's Pride farm was purchased from the Purinton family, its original builders in 1870, 209 years after the executioner arrived,... by the executioners second great grandson, Alexander (Executioner 1637, Joseph 1686, Capt Joseph 1726, Henry 1757, Alexander 1802). Henry's tombstone (Alexander's father who died 1836) is in the Gowen Cemetary next-door. The Purinton purchase looks like a mechanism to establish the legality of Pride lands in the years after the revolution. Both census and burial records indicate a substantial number of Prides occupying the Pride Farm in the early 1800s. In the 1810 census there are 9 Prides listed in Falmouth, but by 1820 all but two moved to nearby towns primarily Cumberland and Westbrook, leaving William and Francis who continue on. Joseph Pride lists Mast Road's Abigail Lord as a relative in Falmouth in the 1860 census and is buried next to her in the Lord-Lowell Cemetary (boat launch). The 1860 census lists Joseph Pride between the Lords, the Hustons, and the Purintons. The 1790 census lists the one Lord, two Purintons, one Huston and four Prides all within a few lines of each other. The 1850 census lists Six Prides in dwelling "362" and Nine Purintons in dwelling "363". I guess the current crop at the Falmouth Historical Society isn't really very good at what they do, despite the pompous boasts to the contrary not to mention the insulting emails. They found 'no evidence' of Prides at Pride Farm before 1870 ! Gee, I found A LOT of evidence of Prides Pre 1870 Purinton purchase and found it pretty easily. The best they could do on Mast Road, (started in the 1650's) was a date well into the steam age ! Ha ! Give me a break ! and give us someone who knows what they are doing.

The fugitive family left no land registrations before the 1870 Purinton purchase, given the history its no surprise. When your first who will challenge your claim. Its the only possible explanation, and one more demonstration of the long running fugitive status and mindset. But go a short distance in any direction from Pride Farm Road and you will find Pride burials, and 39 nearby burials are pre-1870 !! The Names of Lord (Thomas), the Executioner (Joseph), and the Executioner's wife (Jane) are all there as well as all the other family names of Lord Pride. The executioners son Joseph registers land in 1726, 65 years after the Executioner arrives, in the first year of registrations after the treaty, but it is not in the turning square, but several miles closer to the Presumscot river, what does that mean? The executioners grandson, Captain Joseph, lived on East Bridge Street during the revolutionary war 110 years later.

The plot next door to the Purinton House has always been regarded by the family as the original cabins location, and the foundation stones of "dwelling 362" were found and destroyed there just a few years ago. My mother pointed it out to me when I was 12, I looked at the Purinton house an she said "NO over here, I want you to remember this" pointing to the spot where the foundation stones were found, an empty corner of the turning square. She also said there were visible ruins during her lifetime that had dissappeared. When Joseph Arrived in 1661 in this area, it was Mast road or nothing and the turning square would have been the only open area, an area surrounded by mountains of old dead wood.

There are Numerous reports from local senior citizens of hunters finding a generous cache of half melted very old silver coins in Suckfish Brook in the 60's (near to Pride Farm Road). It was the talk of the town for years. I remember hearing about this as a teenager in the 1960's. I can remember puzzled conversations about where it had come from and speculation if it was pirate loot, and why were they melting it.

One hunter Robert Munroe, deceased in 1978, has been identified, by his widow, who saw the coins, expanded interview video upcoming.

(Watch 7 Witnesses Memories)

(Watch 7 Witnesses recollections.)

I first found out about the inheritance and the will from Bangor Daily News reporter Troy Benett in Oct 2023, then put it together when another party related their version of this very story purely 'out of the blue' standing in line at JARS a day or two later. Oddly, the very first seven gray hairs I queried in Windham in the winter of 24 are all recorded in the above video,.. the next 150 were all blanks !

The nearly first hand story I heard in the mid 1960's described it as a half melted lump of old coins from before anyone was supposed to be there. I recently found out my father knew the hunters and I am sure saw the half melted coins. Byron G Pride, builder of many hundreds of Lake Front homes in the 1960s, was so highly respected in the community, mourners filled the church, double lined all the isles, and the walkway up to the front door, filled every stair to the balcony where they could see nothing and stood three deep on the sidewalk outside throughout the service to show thier respect. BG said it (Byron GREENOUGH), thats it, its fact. Since he was in their confidence he never discussed it with me (16 yrs old), but I overheard conversations and that must be how I picked up the details. The hunters themselves were less discrete apparently and bragged privately to just about everybody they knew :).

The description fits the unsuccessful attempt to melt the distinctive coins to a form he could use without alerting the crown to his presence. He failed and just buried the mess, then the Suckfish changed stream and dug it out. Hunters looked down and there was this huge ball of silver just sitting there in the middle of the stream ! Melting on a river bank would have enabled Joseph to extinquish the smoke if a lookout fired a warning shot or it could have been to avoid the dried fuel left by the Masting (implying the silver came early before the Grip of Charles 2nd tightened). Please contact the author if you have any information about this. ($500 reward for a photo or other documentation) The 3700 unfound pounds sterling of the period specified in the will, would directly translate to 234 million dollars, calculated using the most recent Auction as a rare coin, all the same or different types is unknown. But its a lot of money in any case.

Puritans take things like Oaths, Bequests etc very seriously, if it didn't sink, get stolen, siezed by the crown etc. etc. etc. Lord Pride's son Thomas (see the will) would have sent it floating up the Presumscot river at some point. It would have been an unavoidable moral obligation given the wording in the will, and the timing of events and their proximity to his 21st Birthday as specified in the will. Failure or theft in these tight-knit puritan circles would have been unthinkable. Joseph was the next David... See how he dominates Lord Thomas's will and he is a teenager when its written. For this defeated, threatened, tight-knit and insular puritan leadership community Joseph was not only the "Next David", suddenly he was now the new hope in the new Jerusalem, no way they did not send the resources which were rightfully his anyway. Altho Joseph himself was super wealthy after Lord Prides death, and he had months of warning of what was coming to prepare, if he had chosen to do so. As of yet, we have no information on the actual circumstances surrounding Josephs swim to freedom, only that it occurred. All of this transpires in an information sparse environment where the answer to a question by one party can take a year to get a response.

Joseph would have been unable to spend the coins, for himself or the cause, at any point during his lifetime. Circulating distinctive and uncommon New Model Army minted silver would have lead the Redcoats to his door in short order in the small and confined colonial economy. In the short run, the coins were a mortal threat to him, not a source of wealth. It wouldn't matter if he spent them or some one else did, he would be dead either way. Probably why he apparently never even told his kids.

The Prides Corner Treasure Hunt for Landowners

Of the twelve regicides who fled England in the spring of 1660, the fate of three in the US is officially known. Geoffe, Whaley and Dixwell were actively hunted in various episodes until 1689 throughout Massachusetts and New Haven (some 40 years later). One attempt included a contingent of 450 British Redcoats. They escaped with the assistance of widespread puritan support. In a very real sense the American Revolution was simply a continuation of the British Civil War on new ground. In 1775 British soldiers, 135 years later, made a point of traveling great distances spit on Dixwell’s stone. They eventually found safety in the wilderness in western Massachusetts just beyond the western edge of civilization, far away from towns and possible gossip, and survived.

It is fascinating to note the pervasive influence in the Prides Corner, Falmouth area of the British Civil War and the Puritans. Falmouth Maine was named for the Battle of Falmouth and the rolls of the New Model Army that fought there read like the town registers. Levolor names predominate, I am proud to say. A Rainsborough cut my hair as a child, another was my teacher, as was Mr Graves, a Winslow trained my fathers race horses, and a Richards drove them, our neighbors... Frye, Moody, Potter, Butler and Bailey. The list of New Model Army names that matched my childhood was stunning. I can imagine how strong the mythology must have been through the revolutionary war years and much later. The ongoing puritan character of the area would go far to explaining the second century of Josephs and the uniquely puritan twist of private pride and public shunning on a topic like Regicide and Execution in the family tree (especially without proof). Even as late as the 1950's Oliver Cromwell was oft quoted in my family circles. "Warts and All" was a common favorite.

The Reason the plot of 100 acres is deeded in 1726 to the executioners son at age 40 is due to the conclusion of the Casco treaty after years of negotiation in 1725. Once the treaty was signed many plots in the area were registered that year to establish rights to properties already long occupied and worked. The nearby presumpscot river falls, little more than a mile or so away, by water, was the first area of settlement activity with fishing and trading beginning in 1623. Presumpscot river falls had been superseded by 1660, by what later became Portland Maine. Given the decades long world wide campaign to execute the Regicides and the level of settlement in the area around presumpscot river falls in the 1660's, the location, just beyond the northern edge of civilization, far away from towns and possible gossip, actually makes sense if you don't want to get hung drawn and quartered. It was the same solution as the others, just a different direction, 100 miles north of Boston instead of 100 miles west.

Colonists first actions were always build a house and clear land for planting. The suggestion that after 20 or so years of that, that someone would up sticks for greener pastures seems patently at odds with the circumstances. The whole idea of Joseph "arriving" from Beverly in 1726 at the age of 40 to begin anew, was ridiculous on its face.

At the heart of every puritan family is the family bible, listing ancestors back as far as possible on the inside cover and front pages. Puritan Bibles were made with a half a dozen blank front cover pages special for the purpose. I saw a Pride family bible once (whereabouts unknown) that went back to 1820s. Every line a different handwriting (Quill to Iron to Ballpoint as I recall). Puritan Bibles were where you went to consider names for your expected. Both Thomas and Samuel reappear in the Falmouth census of 1800, Elizabeth pops up in 1850. That's everybody,... just in case there was any doubt who this family really is :)

Byron (1847), Merritt (1888), Byron (1921)

Ironically, It was My Grandmother's (Inez Pride) irritation with author John Lewis (yesterdays family villan turned into todays family hero) and his book "The Early History of Prides Corner" ignoring her claims that caused her to shake her finger at my father and insist he tell me the story in the fall of 1968. Byron Pride (my father) was a skeptic, likely influenced by new knowlege of the "official massachusets birth record" that seemed to refute everything for decades til it finally revealed all with the baptism records. He said everybody's been claiming this since day one, I am supposed to tell you so... and afterward shrugged and says who really knows, but with a smile added "heck of a good story tho." I heartily agreed, I was as you can imagine floored. He also dutifully told me to tell my kids and to tell them to tell theirs. Despite his doubts, when he added that there was a deep seriousness in his demeanor unlike anything else I ever witnessed from this honorable citizen, community leader and all round wonderful human being. My dad. It made the impression he intended. In response to my specific query he traced his sources back as far as his grandfather Byron Pride born in 1847 (pictured above - note the distinctly puritan appearance), his father Merritt born in 1888, and several others whose names I did not recognize, long dead by the fall of 1968. My Grandfather Merritt, who was still living the year I was passed the baton, was alive during the life of the last First Born Joseph in our branch.

Inez Pride

The three great turning points in Mankinds long progress toward democracy are the Magna Carta, the Execution of Charles 1st, and the Declaration of Independence. Their relative importance can be debated in each case. In only one was it accomplished by just one single individual. It is the purpose of the site to reveal history but also to mark it. A reconstruction of Josephs cabin recorded on an early 1700's hand painted plate and a state of Maine holiday on Dec 12, to mark these events here in our midst seems appropriate. A Holiday to celebrate one brave resourceful mans final victory over monstrous Tyranny in the form of six baptisims. Highland lake should really be renamed "Josephs Lake" to note the huge role it played in world history. It was his refuge, his water, and his food source, it protected him from the Kings Vengence

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*Contemporary accounts reveal any levolor would have seemingly gladly hefted the axe,... so the statement is a sore thumb for all to see on its face. I am of the opinion, awaiting evidence, a universal decline (except for Joseph) probably did happen, almost would have had too, bumping it into the supernatural realm for its participants anyway, leading to the 40 and phrasing of its result. But the religious, spiritual and moral aspects of the decision which is being noted here are difficult to discern. Did Cromwell, upon finding no volunteers, initiate a survey of 40 ? (shame shame Oliver,... tho shalt not test...). Worse possibility, did he ask none or reject all, and sponsor adolescent murder to use in the manufacture of allegory to support his contention that he lead the second army of the living God ? Of course, it also could have been 40 arrived at without guile, which almost certainly would have lead to the same result by the power of its allegory alone. Its not a number a puritan would have missed under the circumstances.

Recently this article is getting support from several authoritative sources. The following is a recent post from the Author of "In the Name of the Crown" which was a published work about the flight of the regicides.

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Lord Pride

The title of Cromwells Buffon is a play on the characterizations of the bitter Royalists in the centuries that followed. It is typical ruling class derision without foundation on display. Sir Thomas Pride, as the text makes clear, was the opposite of the royalist characterization in every respect. He was a successful and incredibly capable individual, one who was obstinately independent to the point of opposing Cromwell as a virtual equal on important occasions. He is credited as a central force in prohibiting Oliver Cromwell from accepting the title of King in 1657. In what became a common english jest of the period, he gave Cromwell "Colonel Prides Common Council". He looked him in the eye and said so many had died to end Kingships that he would "shoot him in the head at the first opportunity if he acccepted". It was not in jest. Cromwell declined the offer soon after. He was active in civic life, a leading london businessman in the decade before the war, a central figure in the New Model Army, the central figure in building the British Fleet, and a forceful medical reformer in the post war years pioneering PTSD treatment for his soldiers as inspector of both of Londons military hospitals and governor of St Bartholomews hospital in London. He became a leader of charitable agencies for aging soldiers and the poor in his senior years.

He was a front line officer under Essex in many battles, including the bloody 1st and 2nd battles of Newbury (50% combined casualties), and was in command of a regiment during the decisive battle of Naseby under Fairfax on 14 June 1645. He accompanied Cromwell north to victory as the commander of a brigade of three regiments at the final battle of Preston in August 1648 (commanding half the army). In 1653, when Admiral Blake nearly died of the fever, Lord Pride, a leader of divisions of foot (aka "Marines"), was to become Commander of the British Navy, but the Admiral survived. Lord Pride built and ran a good part of British Fleet,... and he almost got to command the British Fleet in battle in person. After the war, To the sound of screeching Royalist derision, he closed the Bear Pit at Southwark, where savage packs of dogs killed tied up bears, tearing them to pieces solely for the entertainment of fancily dressed Cavaliers. His reasons were a sophisticated and poignant lesson in Morality that escaped the Royalists entirely and that most of the world today would not readily grasp.

The near erasure of this giant of the times, Lord Thomas Pride, from history is a powerful lesson for today, as we watch a very similar process working on the memory of JFK

Thomas Pride changed the world forever for the better with his actions. This Giant of History single handedly, apparently by his own decision, changed the entire sweep of British History and the history of the Western World with Prides Purge and abolished absolute monarchy for us all.
Right Man, Right Place, Right Time.

by Dan Pride
6th Great Grandson of Joseph Pride

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Current Investigation Targets

Is there a connection between the stunning prevelance of New Model Army surnames in the falmouth area and Lord Prides Masting Crews in the 1650's. A statistical comparison of new model army names with falmouth census might do to the trick. The Names appear to be predominately levelor. While Lord Pride was definately not a levelor, politically he was a fellow travelor and they dominated the ranks under him.

Parlimentary records reportedly contained many of the original Masting Work orders when Cambridge Universities classic "Forests and Seapower" was written in 1926, do they still exist for Duck Pond?

Identifying the Ship and Harbor should be easy now we know an approximate date and reviewing all voyage documents for previously missed or misunderstood information. The ship could have been a Naval Vessel, not yet on board with the transition.

Reviewing British Civil War documents for same

Review Beverly "Last will and testaments from Beverly to 1750 as soon as the typeset versions become available. Parchements have proved too difficult.

Find a New England Weather Report from Dec 12, 1686

Survey Coin dealers for any historic unusual activity in 17th century British Pounds

Researching this amazing woman Jane Lovering who followed the puritan hero into the Wilderness in the years following widespread massacres by the Maine Indians?

Detailed examination of the baptisim geographic patterns of the First Church, how common were long baptisim pilgrimages?

Reviewing documents and the culture and beliefs of the First Church.

Reviewing new model army records related to the Units commanded by Thomas Pride during the second civil war.

I will be traveling to London for research and meetings in the New Year and would be delighted to conspire with any interested parties DanPride@Gmail.com

James and Rose Pride arrive in Falmouth from Liverpool England aboard the Nestorian in 1867 implying 200 year transatlantic family connections existed.

Statistically analyse the incidence of births named Joseph both before and after the execution to discover if in fact knowledge was (as is suspected) widespread in the puritan community and has been suppressed somehow by the crown. and if true to determine how such a thing could be accomplished. The history of Rewriting of history may be a fascinating history lesson for the world. To understand Josephs status in puritan circles, imagine there was a successful assasin of Hitler and we are talking about him in jewish circles. Charles killed a larger percentage of Britains with his absurd wars than Hitler did. Despite the absurd Royalist depictions, Charles 1st was a small weak man, who didn't speak til he was three, then stuttered all his life but insisted he was all powerful over everyone. He was a cuckold (Charles 2nd was the result of his wifes affair with Henry Jermyn) with a wife who openly expressed distain for his manhood during crisis. He was rumored to have been intimate with his fathers favorite object, Lord Buckingham (as in Bucking the Ham). He was a totally arrogant fool whose foolishness killed multitudes without one iota of remorse. No one was ever more justly beheaded.

Any contributors will be fully credited in all works, contact author link above

It cracks me up to see the image of Charles 2nd in full regailia with septer and all. Can you imagine having this guy dedicated to putting your head on a spike throughout his entire life,... for something you did when you were 12, and you defeat him and survive to raise a large family, with every single one baptised ! :)


See Pride Family Genetic History on 23andme.com and Ancestry.com

I want to Thank All the smart old guys down at the Westbrook Historical Society for their help going back to my first Census Records Search in the 1990's. As for Falmouth, I offer this correspondence without comment, only a snicker :)