Non Newell Paternal Ancestors

Non Newell Paternal Ancestors

This section, which is still in development, provides notes related to my research (including DNA) for my non Newell paternal ancestors. The following chart outlines my knowledge of my fathers ancestors out to my 3X great grandparents.

All of his known ancestors have deep roots in the community of Port de Grave or the neighbouring towns of Bareneed, Otterbury, Clarkes Beach, Salmon Cove, Cupids and Burnt Head (see Map below).

These towns are all situated in Bay de Grave and are within 5 km of ‘The Dock’.  The following aerial view of the Port de Grave peninsula, taken from above the town of Port de Grave (in foreground) looking inland, shows the location of Port de Grave in relation to the surrounding towns.

Cupids in Bay de Grave (directly across from Bareneed) was the site of John Guy’s Colony which was established in 1610. Cupids was the earliest official settlement in Newfoundland and was established a decade before the Mayflower landed in Plymouth.  Richard Newall , a London merchant, spent the summer of 1623 in Newfoundland collecting fish for various English merchants and much of this time was spent in Conception Bay. His diary for that summer (see my research on Richard) indicates that large numbers of English boats were operating in this area and had established bases in various harbours. One of the principal bases for these early fishing stations was Port de Grave.  Local history suggest that Port de Grave was established prior to John Guy’s arrival and many families from Port de Grave trace their roots in this area to the 17th century; this list includes many of my paternal ancestors (Andrews, Anthony, Daw/Dawe and Porter). All of my ancestors were established in Conception Bay by the late 1700s.  After almost 400 years of family connections in this area it is not surprising that my DNA shows that I have distant (5th cousin) links to most long term families from Port de Grave.  Unfortunately, these connections can complicate the process of using DNA to establish family history since I frequently have multiple DNA links to  my distant ancestors.

Another factor that complicates research is a gap in church records for the first half of the 19th century. Prior to 1800 the only established church in Conception Bay was in Harbour Grace and starting in 1775 many births and marriages for the Port de Grave area were recorded there. Starting in the early 1800s local churches were established in other communities like Port de Grave, Bareneed and Brigus but, unfortunately, records for many of these churches were lost in fires during the mid 19th century. As a result I have better information on my late 18th century ancestors than I do on my early 19th century ancestors.

While the community of Port de Grave has been settled for more than 400 years, with very little in-migration after 1800, there was significant out- migration during the 19th century.  An understanding of this pattern of out-migration is useful when sorting out DNA links for people with roots in Port de Grave. The coast surrounding Bay de Grave is very rugged with very few sheltered harbours and few beaches (used to dry the cod). In addition, all the timber (needed for fuel and building boats) was cut or burnt by 1800 and on the headlands there was almost no land suitable for growing crops (see following sketch of the Port de Grave peninsula made in 1841).

Sketch of the Port de Grave peninsula in 1841 with the village of Port de Grave (B) in the foreground and the neighbouring villages of   Ship Cove (A) and  ‘Blow me Down’ (C) immediately to the east.  Bell Island (D) is in the background and Conception Bay South is just to the right and beyond Bell Island.

By the start of the 19th century the population had expanded to beyond the capacity of the land and ocean (in-shore fishing grounds) to support them. In a survey of plantations in the town of Port de Grave conducted in 1805 there were 18 different plantations occupied by members of the Daw/Dawe family (several with adult children).  The Daws (who were the largest family) and their neighbours had reached the limits of the natural environments ability to support them.  As a result many families from Port de Grave relocated and established satellite settlements. Some simply moved further into Bay de Grave and settled in areas like Clarke’s Beach, Salmon Cove, Otterbury and North River.  Others moved to northern Newfoundland and settled in areas of the French Shore (e.g. Notre Dame Bay and White Bay) that were just being settled. However, the largest group from Port de Grave moved to the “South Shore” of Conception Bay (different from Southern Shore which is south of St. John’s). This area is now part of the Town of Conception Bay South which is a modern amalgamated community situated west of St. John’s and formed from towns like Topsail, Foxtrap, Upper Gullies, Kelligrews and Long Pond. In the early 1800s there was no road connecting this area to St. John’s but it was easily reached by boat from Port de Grave. One of the first settlers of this area was John Andrews from a Port de Grave family who settled in Hopewell, Upper Gully.  He appears in records for this area in the 1830s but as early as 1784 he is listed Harbour Grace baptism records as living in Harbour “Mien”. Harbour Main (a community between Port de Grave and Conception Bay South) was the name for the district that included Conception Bay South. In the first half of the 19th century numerous other families from Port de Grave settled in Conception Bay South  and became the earliest settlers in many of the towns that developed in this area. The move to the south shore of Conception Bay gave these settlers unlimited land, which was forested and better suited to agriculture, plus access to new in-shore fishing grounds. A good example of this is that when John Andrews’ grandson (also John) wrote his Will in 1866 he had 80 acres of land in Upper Gully to divide between his sons:

The inside Land cultivated and uncultivated, containing about 80 Acres to be divided into Four equal parts- the eastward part to be John Andrews- Alfred Andrews to have the next- William Zacharias Andrews to have the next- Charles Andrews to have the next. The Land outside of my dwelling house belongs to the Fishing Room, and is to be used by my five sons. The Land inside the Stable to be divided into five equal parts. Henry is to have the first strip, Charles the second, William the third, Alfred the fourth John the fifth.

Even after they relocated to the South Shore the families from Port de Grave continued to maintain contact with Port de Grave.  A review of place of birth in the 1911 census data from Port de Grave  shows that intermarriage between the two areas was common.

The impact this out migration had on the DNA records for people with roots in Port de Grave is that many DNA matches will link to people with earliest known ancestors from Conception Bay South.  I have prepared a separate paper Conception Bay South Melting Pot that investigates the impact that this migration.


My fathers mother,  Clara Andrews (wife of Albert Newell), was born in Ship Cove, Port de Grave, Newfoundland on Feb 7, 1878; Clara was the daughter of George Andrews of Ship Cove, Port de Grave (b. 1848) and Mary Jane Anthony (1856-1951) of Clarke’s Beach.  George’s parents (my gg grandparents) were Robert Andrews of Ship Cove, Port de Grave & Fanny Daw (Dawe) of Port de Grave.   Robert and Fanny (Frances) were married on Dec 7, 1837 at Port de Grave.  There is a clear trail of family records leading from Clara to Robert; however, there is no record for Robert’s birth.  Another Andrews researcher from Port de Grave (Mona Petten) suggested that Roberts father was a William  Andrews and I have followed this line in my Ancestry tree; however, my family tree for Roberts Ancestors represents a best guess.  What is clear from the DNA is that I have numerous 4th cousin connections  to people with Andrews ancestors from Port de Grave, Conception Bay South (settled by people from Port de Grave) and St. John’s (George worked in St. John’s).  A 4th cousin DNA match (or possibly a 4th once removed) would point to Roberts father (likely born in the late 1700s) being the common ancestor  (see my research on Clara’s  family in a  separate  document).

According to Seary et. al. (Family Names of the Island of Newfoundland)  the Andrews family was established in Port de Grave by 1658. However this is an interpretation of a reference in the Port de Grave Plantation Book (see extract from Keith Matthews files (MUN) below:

Gerald Wilfred Andrews (a member of the Andrews family of Port de Grave) in his history of Port de Grave (Heritage of a Newfoundland outport: The story of Port de Grave, 1997)  gives a date of 1700 for the arrival of the Andrews family in Port de Grave. The Andrews family has remained a prominent family in Port de Grave up to the present day.

Prior to the start of Harbour Grace church records in 1775 the only significant data source for Conception Bay were Colonial Office records. Generally, these records only captured information on individuals when they were involved in legal issues.   Some early references to Andrews in Newfoundland Colonial Records include:

1753, Census Trinity, “Andderes” planter “Hearts eas” [Little Heart’s Ease, Trinity Bay] , no family, 8 summer & 6 winter servants,  source Keith Matthews Files (KMF) [note: not in recent transcribed census records?] ;

1755,  Robert Andrews at Harbour Grace “inhabs law/order”, source KMF;

24 Oct 1764, Gov. Hugh Palliser (Court House, St. John’s) sent the following letter: Thomas Seward and William Rumbelow have an unsettled account concerning a partnership on a fishing voyage. Jonathan Andrews has the necessary voucher, source CO files GN 2/1/A;

24 Oct. 1764, John Andrews before 1762 in fishing partnership [in Nfld] , dispute arbitrated in England, source KMF;

21 June 1767 the Lester [Merchant] Diaries record that John Andrews came down to Trinity (from further south in Nfld., likely Conception Bay, source KMF;

1767 Colonial Records Andrews (no first name), his room in Bonavista Bay used by Jonas Williams until 1767 then vacant, source KMF.

The earliest solid information for Port de Grave is the Plantation Book  for Conception Bay compiled c 1805  which documents land ownership.  The  published transcription  of this document I used confuses Andrews and Andress often referencing the same property as owned by Andress in one location and Andrews in another; I am assuming that Andress is a transcription error. The Plantation Book lists the following Port de Grave properties owned by Andrews/Andress:

  • #476, Port de Grave, Henry Andress Sr. and Wm. Snow, Bequeathed to them by his [?] Father-in-Law’s will, claim dated 1758;
  • #522, Port de Grave, John Andress, Bequeathed by his Father’s will and deed of gift, claim dated 1763; Leased to Joseph Furneaux for 30 years;
  • #523, Port de Grave, Wm. Andress (Robert’s son), Bequeathed by his Father’s will and deed of gift, claim dated 1801, Part leased to Joseph Furneaux for 21 years, bounded on the E. and W. by Jno. Andress.

The Plantation Book is missing pages for Bareneed but Salmon Cove is listed separately and records the following:

  • #637, Wm. Andress (Andrews), bounded on the W. by Henry Andrews Jr, purchased from Henry Andrews Jr.for £10, claim dated 1804; and
  • #638, Henry Andrews Jr., cut and cleared agreeable to Act, claim dated 1804.

The Plantation Book for Conception Bay also lists several  Andrews Plantations in Harbour Grace including:

  • #1001, Mary Andrews, Plantation bequeathed to her by her uncles will In possession for 91 years;
  • #1004, “The Andrews’s Room” [property used for fishery]; with 5 Houses (Jno. Andrews, Fras. Andrews, Mary Andrews), bequeathed by their Father’s will and in possession of the family for upwards of 90 years;
  • #1011, Geo .Andrews, by deed of gift from his Mother, in possession of family upwards of 30 years;
  • #1042, Ships Room on Harbour Grace Beach [common land on beach originally intended for use by seasonal ships from UK) now in possession of the Widow Andrews;
  • and several references to Jno. Andrews’ meadow  which was situated near the property of Mary Andrews.

The Harbour Grace records show that the Andrews family was established there around the same time as they were established in Port de Grave; however, they appear to be more established in Harbour Grace (e.g. houses, gardens). It is possible that in the early 1700s the family base was in Harbour Grace (a more established community) and Port de Grave was a fishing station. The deaths of some early Andrews from Harbour Grace are recorded on gravestones in St. Paul’s (Ang.) churchyard cemetery:

Andrews Eliza Belle Jan 24, 1839 67  B 1772
Andrew George Dec 21, 1819 45 Elizabeth  B 1774
Elizabeth Jan 28, 1817 39 George  B 1778
Andrews Jane Aug 10, 1858 72 Robert Andrews  B 1786
Andrews John Feb 22, 1805 50  B 1755 native of Exmouth, Devon
Andrews Robert 14 Nov 179- 78 Elizabeth
Elizabeth 10 Nov 1795 64 Robert
Andrews Robert March 13, 1810 23  B 1787 son of William & Elizabeth Andrews
Andrews Robert May 12, 1833 55  B 1778


A 1817 Census of Port de Grave region (Brigus, Cupids, Bareneed and Port de Grave) list 2 Andrews in Bareneed (note: Bareneed includes Salmon Cove, Clarke’s Beach and North River) and 3 in Port de Grave:

  • #66, Bareneed (likely Salmon Cove), John Andrews Junr ,  unmarried and no children, Well Off;
  • # 78, Bareneed (likely salmon Cove),  John Andrews Sen, married with one child,  Distressed;
  • # 108, Port de Grave, Wm Andrews Jo [John’s] Son [I Son on] , married with 8 children, Well Off;
  • # 109, Port de Grave, Garland Andrews [Gordon on] , married with 8 children, Well Off;
  • # 110, Port de Grave,  Wm Andrews [Son ?], married with 7 children, Well Off.


The transcription for the 1817 Census on the  site (above) also has some issues since the original written records shows that #108 “William Andrews I son”  on is likely William Andrews John’s Son.

It is likely that the John Andress (Andrews)  who was leasing his property at Port de Grave in 1805 was the John Andrews Sr. recorded at Bareneed (Salmon Cove) in 1817 (see above).  A number of families from Port de Grave moved to other locations in the early 1800s (see my paper on Non Newell Paternal Ancestors).

This 1817 census demonstrates that, based on the number of children reported, there was likely a significant increase in the number of Andrews families in Port de Grave in subsequent years. Unfortunately, the early church records for Port de Grave were lost in a fire so it is difficult to piece together how these children match up to the householders from 1817.  The next important data source are Wills for two different William Andrews from Ship Cove (one  probated in 1841 and another probated in 1844).  These two Wills, especially the one for 1844, give us a snapshot of several families of Andrews in Ship Cove around this time period. These Wills are especially interesting to me since one of these Williams might be my  3X  great grandfather.   I have researched these Wills in a separate section of this Web Site that explores the early history of my Andrews ancestors from Port de Grave. The following discussion outlines how my DNA results relate to the historical evidence.

A search of my Ancestry DNA matches  produced a large number of 4th + cousin matches to Andrews but no clear evidence of more recent matches.  By researching other non Andrews DNA matches that did not publish their trees I found several 2nd and 3rd cousin matches that have Andrews ancestors and these also related to a 4th cousin match (further removed). I suspect that the 2nd and 3rd cousin matches may also be connected to me through non Andrews connections (possibly my mother’s  ancestors). Most of these 2nd and 3rd cousin matches have links to Lorenzo Andrews b. 1868 at Harbour Grace who was the son of Robert and Ann Andrews. Robert is a common name in my grandmothers family tree but at this time I cannot find a definitive connection. Since there is some uncertainty  in my early Andrews tree (see my Andrews research) I am continuing to search for this connection.

There were several DNA matches that traced back to the William Andrews I identified as my  3X great grandfather plus a number of other 4th and 5th matches that pointed back to other Andrews from Ship Cove. Some of there could be connected through an earlier generation (e.g. the  Robert Andrews of  PDG who married  Jemima Rossirte  at St. John’s in 1814); however , others like connections to Garland Andrews either represent other connections or errors in my tree.


As stated earlier the mother of my grandmother Clara Andrews was Mary Jane Anthony (1856-1951) of Clarke’s Beach (near ‘The Dock’). This information comes from the record of Mary Jane’s  marriage to George Andrews in 1877:

Dec 2, 1877 Port de Grave ANDREWS X George Bachelor C of E Port de Grave Jas. C. Harvey John Geo. X Tucker
ANTHONY X Mary J. Spinster C of E Clarke’S Beach Elizabeth X Andrews

The only other solid information we have for Mary Jane comes from US immigration records from when she moved to Maine (at age 64) to live with her son Robert in 1920. These records indicate that she was born c. 1856; unfortunately, this was in a period when most local church records were lost in fires.

In my earlier research I  tentatively identified Mary Jane’s parents as William Anthony and Frances Snow (another Port de Grave family). William and Frances were married in the Methodist Church at Clarke’s Beach in 1852.

June 13, 1852 William ANTHONY fisherman Salmon Cove Thomas Smith William Bussey
Port de Grave Frances SNOW Salmon Cove Charles Mugford

I had also identified William as the William Anthony who married Emma Curlew at Bareneed in 1860 (assuming this was a 2nd marriage) but have recently abandoned these theories after reviewing DNA matches and other data (see discussion later in this section).

Anthony is another early Port de Grave name and Gerald W. Andrews in his history of Port de Grave  states that Matthew Anthony of Jersey settled in Port de Grave in 1700. The  Keith Mathews files list the following records:

  • 1760 Matthew Anthony left his son-in-law the Coveduck Plantation in PDG
  • 1780 Matthew Anthony left his daughter Ann Coveduck  a different plantation in PDG
  • 1783 William Anthony of Jersey at Port o Grace (de Grave) indenture with Picot of Jersey ;
  • 1782 William Anthony Sr and Henry Jr of PDG sold plantation at Bareneed (previously owned by William Batten) to Pico of Jersey;
  • 1785 William Anthony sold a Plantation  at PDG.

Note RE above: Battens are in my tree and I get many DNA matches to Coveyduck/Coveduck.

The following is a list of Harbour Grace (Ang) baptisms and marriages for Anthony.

Harbour Grace ANTHONY Henry & Elizabeth Henry M J. Balfour 11 Sept 1784
Harbour Grace ANTHONY Henry & Elizabeth Abraham M J. Balfour 11 Sept 1784
Harbour Grace ANTHONY Henry & Elizabeth Mary F J. Balfour 11 Sept 1784
Harbour Grace ANTHONY Henry & Elizabeth Charlot F J. Balfour 11 Sept 1784
Cupids ANTHONY Joseph & Mary William M J. Balfour 30 Sept 1786
Bay Roberts ANTHONY William & Mary Susannah F J. Balfour 15 May 1790
Cupids ANTHONY Joseph & Mary Isaac M J. Balfour 10 May 1790

there were also the following Methodist baptisms

Cupids ANTHONY Joseph & Mary Joseph M John Percey June 2, 1805 Methodist
Bay Roberts ANTHONY Jos. & Francis Abram M John Percey No entry Methodist

and CofE Marriages

Nov 3, 1784 Harbour Grace ANTHONY, Joseph Bay Roberts J Balfour
LANE, Mary Cupids

The 1805 Plantation Book (for Brigus to Port de Grave) list the following Anthonys :

#600, PDG, Mary Anthony, 163 yds. from E. to W. bounded on the E. by Michl. Connelly on the W. by Thos. Day 108 yds. from H.W.M. to the S. bounded on the S. by the woods 2 Houses 1 Garden 1 Meadow.  ” M. Anthony ” 1770

#604, PDG, Joseph Anthony 86 yds. from E. to W. bounded on the E. by Edward Lunergan on the W. by Wm. Coveyduck 1 Meadow ” Jos. Anthony. By deed of gift from his father in law  1775

#606, PDG, Joseph Anthony, 93 yds. from E. to W. bounded on the E. by Wm. Coveyduck on the W. by Wm. LaDros 161 yds. from H.W.M. to the S. bounded on the S. by the woods 1 Stage 1 Flake 2 Houses 2 Gardens 1 Meadow. ” J. Anthony. Purchased from Henry Anthony for £9  Built 1775

#612, Cupids, Henry Anthony 88 from E. to W. bounded on the E. by a void room on the W. by another void room 200 yds.from H.W.M. to the S. bounded on the S. by the woods 1 Stage 1 Flake 2 Houses 2 Gardens 1 Meadow. ” H. Anthony Rented from his Father H. Anthony Built 1803

#632, Salmon Cove, Henry Anthony, 249 yds. from E. to W. bounded on the E. by the woods on the W. by Arthur Rich 186 yds. from H.W.M. to the S. bounded on the S. by the woods. 1 Stage 1 Flake 1 House 2 Gardens Salmon Cove Port de Grave H. Anthony Cut and cleared agreeable to Act.Wm.3 Chap. 25.Sec.7 H. Anthony Do 1805

The Brigus / Port de Grave Census of 1817 list the following Anthonys:

  • Bareneed (likely the Salmon Cove area), Hen’y Anthony, wife no children;
  • Bareneed (ibid.), John Anthony, wife one child;
  • Bareneed (ibid.), Wm Anthony, wife one child,
  • Cupids, Henry Anthony, wife and 5 children (neighbour to Stephn “Coucduck”)
  • Cupids, M? (likely Matthew) Anthony, wife and 2 children;
  • Cupids, Abm. Anthony, wife and 2 children.

Note RE above: no Anthonys in PDG.

The 1835 Voters list for the South Side of Bay de Grave and Northern Gut list the following Anthonys:

ANTHONY, Henry Cupids  
ANTHONY, Joseph Cupids  
ANTHONY, Moses Cupids  
ANTHONY, Mathew Salmon Cove Port de Grave Bay
ANTHONY, John Salmon Cove Port de Grave Bay
ANTHONY, William Salmon Cove Port de Grave Bay

Note no Voters list data for the town of Port de Grave.

As indicated earlier, my great grandmother who married George Andrews in 1877 was Mary Jane Anthony of Clarke’s Beach.  In my earlier research I had tentatively identified Mary Jane’s parents as William Anthony and Frances Snow (another Port de Grave family). William and Frances were married in the Methodist Church at Clarke’s Beach in 1852. I had I had also identified William as the William Anthony who married Emma Curlew at Bareneed in 1860 (assuming this was a 2nd marriage).

A search for people with matching DNA and Anthony in their tree produced four 3rd cousin matches, 40+ 4th cousin matches and numerous 5th cousin matches.  There were many matches but most did not have histories for their Anthony ancestors that extended into the early 19th century and many had other names from my tree in their tree.   The 3rd cousin matches are most interesting since they match my relationship with Mary Jane’s parents. A review of the four 3rd cousin matches indicates that:

  • one only has a very early Anthony (b 1762) and other more likely non Anthony connections;
  • one has a link to the Anthonys of Seldom (Fogo Island) and other possible connections;
  • one has a link to the William Anthony who married Emma Curlew but another likely connection to me; and
  • one has a link to a Selina Anthony born Codroy (west coast of Nfld) c 1860s.

The latter is most interesting since there was a Selina born at North River (adjoining Clarke’s Beach) in 1862

Aug 21, 1862 Northern River ANTHONY William & Mary Ann Selina F Jas C. Harvey Jan 4, 1863 C of E

Based on the DNA connection this Selina could have been a sister of Mary Jane which would make William and Mary Ann the parents of Mary Jane.

I have recently reevaluated my thinking regarding Mary Janes’ parents based on the DNA data and a new deeper, look at the records.  I originally had Mary Jane’s father, William, marrying Frances then marrying Emma Curlew at Bareneed in 1860. However, based on DNA and a 2nd look I think that a different William Anthony (there is no shortage of William Anthonys around this time) married Emma in 1860 . I do get a DNA links with one of William and Emma’s children but this may come from another link (Clark). I have tentatively put this William (2X great grandfather) as a child of the William b 1786 (Son of Joseph and Mary). I did this since I get a number of DNA links back to Joseph; however, since I also have Dawe and Andrews in my tree this might come form one of these.  A closer look at the original US records related to Mary Janes’ arrival there in 1920 shows that she had a brother William who was living in St. John’s when she moved to US in 1920 and a niece “Pressie Jenkins” (given as contacts in different documents). There were a number of William Anthonys living in or near St. John’s around this time; however, the niece proved to be the a key lead.  In the 1921 Census Prescilla Jenkins  age 21 was living with her mother Louisa Jenkins age 70 in Harbour Grace. Louisa was a widow and likely the Louisa Bray who married Henry Jenkins at Harbour Grace in 1876; this is also likely the Henry who died at age 57 in 1907. I originally saw this as a dead end until I found the following marriage for a William Anthony born 1861 to Jessie Lousia Bray.

27 Nov 1884 Harbour Grace ANTHONY William 23 Bachelor Seaman Harbour Grace John M. Noel James Jacobs
BRAY Jessie Louisa 21 Spinster Harbour Grace Mary Noel

It is not clear how Prescilla is linked to Jessie Louisa but the link to the Bray family of Harbour Grace cannot be a coincidence. Perhaps Jessie Louisa and Louisa were sisters.

(still under construction)


My great grandmother Caroline Newell  née Wells was from Salmon Cove, a community situated at the head of Bay de Grave.  Salmon Cove gets it’s name from the salmon river called South River , that flows into Bay de Grave. This area was originally (up to early 1800s) called Southern Gut. A second river (North River) flows into Bay de Grave just north of South River and this area was originally called Northern Gut.

Location of Salmon Cove (now part of the modern town of South River)

According to Seary et. al. (Family Names of the Island of Newfoundland) the Wells family was established in Trinity and Conception Bays by the 1770s:

The following is a list of the earliest references to the Wells name in Conception Bay:

  • 1776 William Wells & brother James at PDG since 1776, inherited Plantation from their mother (see 1805 Plantation Book);
  • 1778 William Wells, from Port de Grave (PDG), married Elizabeth Porter at Harbour Grace (HG).
  • 1778 Simon Wells and Frances Ash, both from Carbonear, married at HG
  • 1782 Matthew Wells & Ann Bradbury married at HG
  • 1786 Theophius Wells (of Cupids) and Grace, birth of daughter Mary recorded at HG
  • 1788 Richard Wells & Anne Andrews married at HG
  • 1789 Samuel Wells & Bridget Handrahan married at HG
  • 1790 William Wells & Elizabeth of Hibbs Cove (PDG), birth of daughter Patience at HG
  • 1792 Theophius Wells (of PDG) and Grace, birth of daughter Anne recorded at HG
  • 1796 Richard Wells at Salmon Cove since 1796 (see 1805 Plantation Book)
  • 1796 Theophilus Wells of Colliers sold Land
  • 1796 Theophilus Wells at Cupids since 1796 (see 1805 Plantation Book)

A complete list of post 1800 references is included in a separate Wells Timeline document.

In the 19th century there were a number of connections between the Newell family of ‘The Dock’ and the Wells family of Salmon Cove. There include:

  • Richard Newell (brother of my great grandfather John) married Mary Anne Wells of Salmon Cove  in December 1849;
  • Richard Newell’s second wife (married 1870) was Selina Jane Wells from Salmon Cove ;
  • John Newell , my great grandfather, married Caroline Wells of Salmon Cove c 1860, ;
  • John Wells of Salmon Cove (son of Richard and Frances Wells of Salmon Cove, source Judy Foote) married Lavinia Efford of Port de Grave at Bareneed in 1862. DNA test connect me to this John so he was likely a 1st cousin to Caroline;
  • Robert James Wells of Salmon Cove married Ruth Newell of ‘The Dock’ in 1890, Robert (1858-1940) was the son of Robert Wells of Salmon Cove and a nephew of Caroline and Mary Ann Wells (source Judy Foote) ;
  • Susannah Serrick, a daughter of Jacob Serrick and Sarah Elizabeth Wells of Cupids (linked to Salmon Cove), married John Newell son of Nathaniel (a brother of Richard and John) in 1890;
  • Priscilla Serrick, another daughter of Jacob Serrick and Sarah Elizabeth Wells of Cupids married Nathaniel Newell Jr. (Nathan) son of Nathaniel Sr. and brother to John (above) in 1894.

Due to the loss of early church records there are no birth records for the three Wells girls who married Newells from ‘The Dock’ but we can estimate their date of birth from other later data:

Mary Ann Wells, 1st wife Richard Newell of The Dock, was born c. 1822 (est from age at death);

Selina Jane Wells, 2nd wife Richard Newell of The Dock, was born c.1834 (est from age at death); and

Caroline Wells, wife of my great grandfather John Newell of The Dock, was born c 1836 (est from age at death).

Given the data available I could not definitively establish the parents of Mary Ann Wells and Selina Wells since baptismal records for Salmon Cove only start in 1860; however, since Caroline moved to the US around 1906 her fathers name (Henry) was recorded on her immigration papers.  Caroline was buried in Salem, MA where she was living with her daughter after John’s death. Caroline’s death certificate list her father as Henry and her mother’s maiden name as Bushey (see Bushey / Bussey below) but no first name (see: Caroline Newell wife John Death 1920 Mass ).

Another researcher states that Selina Jane Wells was a daughter of William Wells and Patience Bussey and Caroline and Mary Ann (1st wife of Richard above) were sisters and their parents were Henry and Mary Ann Wells of Salmon Cove (source Judy Foote).

There were several Henry Wells living in Salmon Cove around this time and I have attempted to group them:

#1. Henry of Bareneed 1817; Henry of 1835 Voters List for Salmon Cove; only Henry in Salmon Cove in 1850 Church Society Report; Henry Sr. of 1860 Church Society Report and Henry Wells Salmon Cove Will Admin 1860.

#2. Henry & Sarah:1860 birth son Henry (poss died 1895), 1865 birth of Son Levi; likely Henry Jr of 1860 Church Society Report & Sr of 1871 Directory, a Henry W of Salmon Cove died 1912 @ 63 born 1849.

#3. Henry & Matilda: 1867 birth of son James, 1872 (Gullies) , Henry born Cupids married Matilda in 1867 poss Henry jr of 1871;, Henry & Matilda daughter Patience bapt 1870 Brigus Methodist; Will 1921;  a Henry (Harry) of Gullies died 1921 @ 83 born 1838 Brigus Methodist.

The Henry with the 1860 Will looks like the best candidate for Caroline’s father. Based on her DOB she would have been in her mid 20s when her father died and she married John Newell. It was not unusual for daughters to marry around the time of their fathers death. This Henry would also fit (time line) as the father of Mary Ann and Selina Jane.

A census of the Port de Grave area conducted in 1817 records six Wells as householders at Bareneed  (William Sr, William Jr, Henry, John, Rick & Sam); no Wells were recorded at Port de Grave or Cupids.  This census did not list any towns between Bareneed and Cupids. It included people from Otterbury and Northern Gut in Bareneed so statistics for Bareneed may also include Southern Gut (i.e Salmon Cove). Henry of the 1817 census is a good candidate for Caroline’s father. He is recorded as married with one child which suggest a younger man. There is no Henry recorded in the 1805 Plantation Book which could suggest that he was born after 1785 (not a householder in 1805). This would fit for someone who died in 1860.

The Henry of the 1817 Bareneed census was grouped with John and Richard Wells (possibly related or lived in same area). This Richard had 4 children and 5 servants suggesting the elder member of the group. This could be the Richard who married Ann Andrews (another family in my tree) in 1788 and the Richard living in Salmon Cove in 1805.  This makes this Richard the best candidate for Henry’s father.

The majority of DNA matches suggest a 4th cousin relationship which is one generation further removed from me than this Henry; however, some of these matches show (in their tree) what appears to be a 3rd  cousin connection. The 4th cousin DNA matches suggest that the common DNA ancestor for these matches was Henry’s father or there is a missing generation on one side of the match (3rd plus one removed).  Some trees associated with DNA matches show a Henry Wells and Mary Ann House from Bonavista as the parents of the girls who moved to ‘The Dock’. My research shows this Henry and Mary of Bonavista were married in  1794 and had their last child in 1813 (would not fit Caroline born 1836). The DNA also pointed to a possible link to John Wells / Wills born at Mosquito (Bristol’s Hope) in 1828. This John is almost certainly the son of William “Wells” [clear in Doc] of Mosquito who married Mary Herald at Harbour Grace in 1826.  Mary Herald was the Daughter of George Herald of Bears Cove, Harbour Grace (near Mosquito) who was my 3X great grandfather on my mothers side. There are also a number of distant (5th cousin) DNA links to Wells from the Notre Dame Bay (NDB) area including Frances Hannah ‘Fanny’ Wells (born c 1807 in Twillingate) who married John Freeman (see my research on Freeman family).  There are also connections between this Wells and Freeman family in Twillingate  and other Wells and Freeman families in Fogo and Joe Batt’s Arm. My Freeman / Wells links could represent two different connections to NDB or crossover from one or the other.

I have attached a Time Line for the Wells family of Salmon Cove in a separate sub file.

Bushey / Bussey

The preceding section identified the family name for my 2X great grandmother Mary Ann who married Henry Wells as Bushey based on information recorded in her daughters death certificate (see: Caroline Newell wife John Death 1920 Mass ).  This may be an exception to the rule that my fathers ancestors were connected to Port de Grave; however, it may not be. Bushey is not a common name in Newfoundland and is almost unknown in Conception Bay. Seary et. al. (Family Names of the Island of Newfoundland) states that Bush(e)y is a surname of England or a variant of Bussey.

The Bushey name is found in the White Bay area of Newfoundland and is linked to a Joseph Bushey who lived there in the late 19th century. My first theory was that Mary Ann might be connected to this Joseph. This Joseph was living with his son in law (Andrew Gale) and his family at Sops Island, White Bay in 1935 and the detailed data also indicates that:

  • that he was born in Canada in 1852.
  • he immigrated to Newfoundland in 1872 (from Canada);
  • that he was Roman Catholic (his daughter married into CofE) ;
  • his father was born in Canada; and
  • his mother was born in France.

In 1921 he was living at Roderickton,  St. Barbe District and was likely working at the sawmill operated by the Grenfell Mission. It appears that most Busheys in northern Newfoundland were descended from this Joseph (e.g. Charles living at Englee in 1921). His late arrival in Newfoundland makes it unlikely that he was related to my Mary Ann. A search of DNA matches with Bushey in their tree produced four 5th cousin matches living in the US with Bushey ancestors that came from Canada (Quebec) in the 19th century (might have originally been Boucher).

This does not completely rule our Bushey but does raise the possibility that the name might have been Bussey. The person filling out the death certificate in Massachusetts could have easily confused Bushey and Bussey.  Bussey is a common name in Port de Grave and historically was found in  Cupids and Salmon Cove. A search for my DNA matches with the Bussey name in their tree produced 17,  4th cousin matches and numerous 5th cousin matches. Many of these connect back to early Busseys living in the Port de Grave region in the mid 19th century. This DNA evidence has to be evaluated in light of the connections between families in the Port de Grave region.  The Census of Brigus, Cupids, Bareneed and Port de Grave conducted  in 1817 list the following Busseys:

  • John Bussey Jr. & Sr. at PDG;
  • Jacob Bussey at PDG;
  • Isack Bussey at PDG;
  • Joseph Bussey at Cupids; and
  • Thomas Bussey at Bareneed (Salmon Cove).

Note the transcription of the 1817 Brigus Census on the Chebucto Web Site incorrectly transcribed the name as Bupey by confusing the archaic way of writing a double s with a p.

These 1817 Busseys were likely related to the following three Busseys recorded in the 1805 Plantation Book:

John Bussey at PDG;

Joseph Bussey at PDG; and

Thmas Bussey at Salmon Cove.


My 2 X great grandmother who married John Newell (son of Philip) was Patience Porter from “Blow-me-Down”, Port de Grave.  There is no record of her birth in Harbour Grace church records and early Port de Grave church records  were lost in a fire so it is not possible to definitively establish when she was born and who her parents were.  Based on John’s date of birth of 1793  (recorded in Harbour Grace) and the birth dates of her children we can estimate that she was likely born around 1800.  I have tentatively identified Patience as the daughter of Richard Porter of Blow me Down, Port de Grave (see my Newell family of Bareneed tree). This Richard died in 1853 and in his Will dated 1850 he references a daughter Patience. The Report of the Newfoundland Church Society for 1847 listed six Porters in the Port de Grave area:

  1. George, Blow-me-Down;
  2. Richard #1, Blow-me-Down;
  3. Richard #2, Blow-me-Down;
  4. William, Blow-me-Down;
  5. William, Pickeys;
  6. John, Hibb’s Hole.

Richard who died in 1853 was likely one of the Richards from Blow me Down and the other Richard might be his grandson who was the child of a son John who likely died before 1850 (see Will). William Porter from Blow me Down was likely his son (born c 1814). It is also likely that many if not all of the other Porters listed in 1847 were Patience’s cousins.

An Ancestry DNA search for Porter relatives produced a large number of 3rd, 4th and 5th cousin Porter matches but this DNA data is difficult to interpret since my other relatives with connections to the Port-de-Grave area (Andrews, Dawe, Anthony, Snow, Wells and Batten) frequently intermarried with members of the Porter family. This likely accounts for the 3rd cousin matches which may have DNA from several of these families. Overall, the majority of Porter DNA matches point to the Port-de-Grave area which fits with the historical data. In the Port de Grave matches there is a cluster of DNA matches that point back to William Porter of Blow me Down (born c 1814) who was likely Patience’s brother (Referenced earlier).

The survey of settlers in Conception Bay (AKA Plantation Book) conducted around 1805  listed at least four different Porters living in Port de Grave including a Richard and Richard Jr. ; these Porters owned  six different properties and in several cases the survey indicates that these properties were:  possessed by him and his ancestors for 106 years.  The earliest references to the Porter name in Conception Bay is a reference to a Richard Porter constable of Carbonear District in 1730/32 (cited in Family Names of Newfoundland) and a John Porter who in 1763 was accused of mistreating a servant:

26 Oct 1763         Gov. Thomas Graves (St. John’s)  [to]  Charles Garland Esq., Justice of the Peace (Conception Bay)     [RE]       William Tool petitioned that he served John Porter, who used him in a violent manner and has not paid him his wages. Garland is to oblige Porter to pay the wages and give Tool satisfaction for the ill usage, so long as what he says is true.

There were also a large number of my Porter DNA matches linked to Conception Bay South (Long Pond, Foxtrap); an area that was settled in the early 1800s by people from the Port-de-Grave area.  The Report of the Newfoundland Church Society for 1847 listed two families of Porters living on the “South Shore” (of Conception Bay). These were Nathaniel and “Theo. & Sus.”. This last couple was Theophilus Porter who married Susanna Rideout (both of Foxtrap) at St. John’s in 1836.

June 14 1836 St. Johns Theophilus PORTER widower, Fox Trap Susanna RIDEOUT* widow, Fox Trap Joanna Simms, Anne Hoyles widow Susanna Rideout believed to be nee Elizabeth Susanna HISCOCK who md widower Richard Rideout 1824.

Other Porters form the Port de Grave area likely moved to Conception Bay South after 1847.

Other clusters of Porter DNA matches are linked to Spaniard’s Bay (likely branch of Port de Grave Porters) and  Elliston (originally Bird Island Cove)  near Bonavista. Several individuals in this Elliston cluster are associated with Sara Jane Porter (1760-1849, baptized at Bonavista, daughter of Thomas) from Elliston who married George Oldford of Trinity; interestingly, George Oldfords mother was Mary Hannah Newell from Trinity (another poss source for DNA). There are also Oldfords linked to the Norman family of Greenspond, Bonavista Bay  (see my research on my maternal ancestors).  Sara Jane’s father was likely the Thomas Porter of Bonavista  referenced in the  Colonial Secretary’s Office, Outgoing Correspondence  for 1762.

Batton / Batten

The Ancestry test may also have provided  evidence for a theory first presented to me by Harold Newell  in the 1970s; Harold noted that on the same day when Philip Noel (Newell) married  Amy Batton at St. Pauls’ Church, Harbour Grace, Nfld. in November 1784 a William Button (Batton) married a Mary Noel. Harold suggested that it was a case of siblings marrying siblings in double marriage ; however, there was no hard evidence for this (see my discussion of ‘The Early Newells‘ under ‘The Dock’ Tab on this site). The Ancestry DNA test may have found  evidence for this. I had a 3rd or 4th cousin match (Confidence: Extremely High) with a person that traces back to a Isaac Batten of ‘The Dock’ born c 1869 (see his details in 1921 census below).

Name Age
Isaac Batten b. c 1869 52
E Jessie Batten 42
Lemuel Batten 19
Mary E Batten 17
Elizabeth C Batten 9
Maxwell R W Batten 5
Arthur E Batten 2
Mildred Batten 1

This Isaac was likely the Isaac born at the Dock on the 2nd. Oct. 1868 to John (1837-1900) and Elizabeth Batten nee Titford.  Based on the fact that the common ancestor would be one generation earlier than Philip (my ggg grandfather) I was expecting a relationship at the 4th or 5th cousin level so a match at a 3rd or 4th cousins was surprising since there were no other family names that were common to our trees.  After some deliberation I remembered that this was a case of siblings marrying siblings. As a result the children of both couples would have similar DNA (both shared Newell & Batten DNA). This would mean that the DNA would reflect a later common ancestor (less dilution of DNA). Two Newell 3rd cousins and a 4th cousin descended from James son of Philip also have this person as a match.