born about 1536 probably in Burbage, Leicestershire, England, died before
3 June 1580 in Burton-On-Trent, England; he married Mawdlin
whose baptism record listed her as a widow in 3 June 1580 in Burton-On-Trent
parish records. Parents of:
born on 20 December 1566 in Burbage, Leicestershire, England, died 9 March
1612 in Lichfield, Staffordshire, England. He married Francis
Edward was a minister of the Six-Principle Baptist Church, which later became the faith of the first church founded in Rhode Island and the first Baptist church organized in America, the old First Baptist Church of Providence, founded 1638, of which Roger Williams was founder.
Being a non-conformist of the radical wing, the Separatists, he was destined to be persecuted. In the Spring of 1611 he was condemned to burn at the stake in the following Spring on the 9th March 1612, this through awarrant issued by King James. The drawing at right is an artist's rendering of Edward's burning in the Market Square.
Edward was reportedly the last person punished in such a manor in England.
Doctrines & Beliefs of Edward Wightman
as drawn from the Commission & Warrant for his execution
born 4 November 1632 in England, died about 1 February 1721/1722 in North
Kingstown, Washington Co., Rhode Island; married Elizabeth
born about July 1644 in New Amsterdam (New York City), New York, where
she was baptized on 27 July 1644 in New Amsterdam (New York). She
died about 1715 in Quidnesset, Rhode Island.
born 16 April 1674 in North Kingstown, Washington Co., Rhode Island, died
about April 1750 in Exeter, Washington Co., Rhode Island. He married
born in 1683 in Kingston, Rhode Island. Jane was the daughter of
a currier, who had come from England on the ship Arabella,
sailing from Gravesend on 27 May 1671. William died in 1720. Her
mother's family name may have been Leithfield.
John Wightman, yeoman, lived on the so-called Great Plaine in the northern part of Kingstowne. His homestead, a tract of about three hundred acres, was inherited from his father under the latter's will, proved 2 February 1722, but he had probably lived there since his marriage in 1700. Following the division of the town in 1722 into North and South Kingstown, this three hundred acre tract fell within the limits of the former; and when in 1742/1743 the western part of North Kingstown was set off as Exeter, the farm was crossed by the dividing line, the greater part lying in Exeter, being located about two miles northwest of the present  station of Slocums. He acquired other parcels of land by purchase, and established his two oldest sons, John, Jr. and James on farms, the latter being taken off from the homestead.
The records show him serving office on the Town Council; he was Overseer of the Poor; and was Town Treasurer in North Kingstown from 1729 until the division of the town in 1743. In 1724 he was administrator of the estate of his brother, Samuel Wightman, and was guardian of the latter's heir, a minor, as late as 1727. He also served for a time as guardian of the widow Sarah Wightman. "Guardian" in this context means someone charged with looking after the property rights of a minor, widow, etc., not a substitute parent as we might interpret the word today.
John Wightman was a Baptist, his name and that of Jane, his first wife, appearing in the membership of the rural Six-Principle Baptist Church, called Stony Lane Church, situated about five miles to the northeast in North Kingstown. He lived to see his second son, James, installed as pastor of this church about 1740, some ten years before John's death. He was one of the signers of a Petition from the Association of Baptist Churches meeting with this North Kingstown Church, 8 September 1729, praying the General Court in Connecticut for exemption from unjust taxation for the Baptist Churches there.
The 300-acre homestead passed to the oldest son, John, the farm of 112 acres taken off in 1732 and deeded to the second son, James, having been deeded back to the estate when the latter removed to East Greenwich. John sold this homestead in two parts: the 112-acre tract to Samuel A. Boone, and 1688 acres to Ezekiel Gardner.
born in 1717 in North Kingstown, Washington Co., Rhode Island, died in
December 1786 in North Kingstown, Washington Co., Rhode Island.
Valentine Wightman left home when a young man, finding employment in South Kingstown, which was his residence at the time of his marriage. He was married to Rebecca Jamain in Newport by Rev. Nicholas Eyres, assistant pastor of the Second Baptist Church of which his own uncle, Rev. Daniel Wightman, was the pastor. In the marriage record his wife's family name (hardly legible) appears to be Jayman (Newport rec., Vol. I). It seems probable that her name was Jamain but spelled phonetically in the record as it had come to be pronounced.
Rebecca Jamain was born in 1720 probably in Newport, Rhode Island. In 1686, a colony of French Huguenots, comprising 45 families from western Normandy, emigrated to America and located in Rhode Island. Purchasing some 5000 acres of Narragansett lands in the southeastern part of East Greenwich from the Atherton Land Co., they allotted their farms, planted trees and hedgerows and began raising crops. The venture proved an unhappy one. Speaking a foreign tongue, clanishly serving their own interests within their own domain, and particularly keeping to some of the forms of their ancient religion, especially the altar, they were held in suspicion, and friction developed. In 1687, Gov. Andrus tried to settle the aggravating contention over meadows and hay, but disaffection grew, and by 1692 most of them had left. As they were originally largely of the merchant class, they went to New York, Boston, and some to Newport.
Among these Huguenot families was one by the name of Jamain, the head of which was Etienne (Stephen) Jamain. As the dispersion of the Jamain family took place some 28 years before Rebecca Jamain's birth, she was probably a granddaughter; but nothing is known of her immediate parentage.
Following marriage, Valentine and Rebecca located in Wickford, and in 1770 were living on the post road "between Lodowyck Updike's gate and Boone's Mill" (town meeting records). In the census of 1774 Valentine is shown as head of a household comprising eight males over sixteen, suggesting that Valentine may have been a tailor with apprentices, or an innkeeper. In 1782 (R. I. Census) his household numbered three females between twenty-two and fifty, besides himself and wife.
Both Valentine and Rebecca were members of Stony Lane Baptist Church, located two miles north and west from their corner on the post road, their names appearing in the membership list of 3 July 1766. The pastor of this Church was Valentine's brother, Rev. James Wightman. In 1784 they were residents of Exeter, but called "of No. Kingstown" (town meeting records). Valentine died in North Kingstown two years later. As he left no will, the "son John" was appointed administrator on 22 December 1786, with his brother Paul and brother-in-law Benjamin Cole as bondsmen (No. Kings. Prob., xii, 56). The inventory, filling a page, is entirely illegible.
Their descendants in several branches of the Wightman family changed their name to Whitman. His daughter Patience adopted the name Whitman later in life, and changed her son's name to Whitman "Whit" Valentine Cole.
Rebecca was living in Exeter, Rhode Island in 1784, but that is the last record of her.
Valentine and Rebecca were parents of:
|© Mark A. Wentling, 2000||