Joseph Jenks, Jr. (October 12, 1628 to January 4, 1717) - Born in Colnbrook or Hounslow, Middlesex, England. He married Ester Ballard in Lynn, Essex, Massachusetts in 1655. He died in Pawtucket, Rhode Island.
Quote from the Genealogical Dictionary of Rhode Island by John O. Austin:
On March 25, 1669, he was granted land on either side of the Pawtuxet for the employ of his sawmill, and he, for this favor from the purchasers of Warwick, agreed to let them have boards at 4s 6d the hundred, and all other sawn work to be equivalent to same. The grant included trees of pine, chestnut, or oak, within half a mile of each side of the river, that is floatable, the proprietors reserving the right to cut what they need.
January 18, 1670. He was foreman of a jury in the case of Thomas Smith and Ruth, his wife, "who were both drowned in the river of Pawtuxet, the 16th instant at night."
October 10, 1671. Providence. He bought 60 acres more or less with right of commonage, of Abel Potter, and wife Rachel, said land belonging formerly to Rachel's grandfather, Ezekiel Holliman, and being situated near Pawtucket Falls. Here he established his forge, saw-mill, &c.
1676. His forge was destroyed by the Indians, in King Phillip's war.
July 1, 1679. Taxed 12s 6d, including his saw-mill.
May 5, 1680. He and two others were empowered by Assembly to purchase a bell "for the public use of this colony, and for giving notice or signifying the several times or settings of the Assemblys and Courts of Trial, and General Councils." The bell was purchased for 3 Pounds 10s of Freelove Arnold (daughter of Governor Benedict Arnold). Earlier the Assembly had been called together by beat of drums.
November 14, 1683. He had land laid out.
September 1, 1687. He and his sons, Joseph and Nathaniel, were taxed together 12s.
August 6, 1688. Rerable estate, 6 acres planting land, 2 acres meadow, 8 acres pasture, 30 acres wild pasture, rights in land, 4 oxen, 7 cows, 2 steers, heifer, yearling, 2 mares, colt, swine, sheep, saw-mill.
January 30, 1690. He and five others and the Deputy Governor, wrote a letter to William and Mary congratulating them on their accession to the throne, and informing them that since the deposition of Sir Edmund Andros, the former government under the charter had been reassumed. They also mentioned the seizure of Andros, in Rhode Island, on his flight from Massachusetts, and his return to that colony, on the demand of Massachusetts.
July 2, 1695. He was chosen by the Assembly to run the eastern line of the colony.
July 16, 1713. Taxed 12s 6d.
October 21, 1708. Date of his will, which was proved February 11, 1717.
The will of Joseph Jenks is published in its entirety in The Jenks Family in America.
The Jencks family selected a 165 ft. square lot to lay their beloved to rest on Broken Back Hill, later known as Rhode Island Historical Cemetary Pawtucket, at that time a pleasant setting overlooking the river. The first burials were probably Joseph Jenks, the founder of Pawtucket, and his wife Esther Ballard in 1717. It remained in active use until the establishment of Mineral Spring Cemetery in 1774. The final recorded burial was Jonathan Jenks in 1781. After time the burial ground was heavily vandalized and it had apparently completely disappeared by 1894, when William Phinney, one of the older citizens of the Pawtucket, wrote an article for the Pawtucket Gazette & Chronicle about his recollections of the cemetery, which he had lived adjacent to as a child. He recalled that there were about sixty slate stones with angels' heads carved on the face. At that time they were badly leaning, broken and defaced. Mr. Phinney drew a plat of the burying ground indicating the surrounding buildings and the major grave locations including those of Joseph Jenks Sr. and his wife and Governor Joseph Jenks. Then in June of 1925, five gravestones and human remains were unearthed during excavation for construction of a garage on a lot between the Allen House on Read St., the Masonic Temple on High St., and behind the Capt. Ellis House on Roosevelt Ave. The first stone examined was that of Joseph Jenckes, Colonial Governor of Rhode Island 1727-1732. It was one of two slabs used to cover a well behind the Allen House. There were four other stones discovered that day: Martha [Brown] Jenks, Lydia Jenks, William Jenckes, Esq., the foot stone of Governor Joseph Jenks, and an unidentified stone.
Note: This cemetery is considered lost and no trace of it can be found today.
Esther Ballard (November 5, 1632 to January 4, 1717) Daughter of William Ballard born 1603 in Southwell, Nottingham, England. He died in 1689 in Andover, Essex, Massachusetts, USA. William married Elizabeth Lee (1610 - March 15, 1687) in 1631. Esther, nicknamed "Hester" was born in Warwick, Warwickshire, England. She came to America when she was two years old on the "James" in 1635. She passed away in Pawtucket, Providence, Rhode Island.