French Family Association

The Official Website of the Surname French

One Bow Street (today) near Harvard University, the address/location where the French family first lived in Cambridge, MA about 1635-1650. Photo taken by Mara French Sep 2004. John also resided on the southeast corner of Holyoke and Mt. Auburn Streets in Cambridge, MA

Chart #3, John French, 1610,
Cambridge, Taunton, Berkley, Oakham,
and Fall River, MA

This chart updated by Mara French on 5/20/10. Numbers in brackets [ ] show sources and refer to the bibliography at the end of this chart. An asterisk (*) shows continuation of that line. Send any corrections or additions to this chart to Revisions: 1999, 2008, 2010.

The following charts now connect to Chart #3: Charts 13, 18, 75, and 83.


Chart #3 by Mara French (gedcom), over 1,200 French entries beginning with John French

This file has not been updated with the latest information. For early information, please see the following link.

Early Ancestry of John French in England

History and Research

DNA Test Results for DNA Group 6


Old Photos of Cambridge




Files Not Maintained

The following files are dated 2001 and are not maintained; however, they provide valuable information on this line.

Chart #3 by Judi Assony (short text version of first four generations)

Index of Chart #3 (detailed index)

Index of Chart #3 (brief index)

Index of Chart #3 (surnames)

Chart #3 Family Photos

History and Research

John French was born in England, he probably came with his wife to America about 1635, settling in Cambridge, MA. He did not immigrate with his brother, William French, FFA Chart #2. In 1637 he was listed as a property owner, and in 1642, was on a list of proprietors of Cambridge. He is mentioned in church records, 1638-39-40. By trade he was a tailor. Both he and his wife died during an epidemic in the winter of 1645/6 leaving five children: Mary, John, Sarah, Joseph and Nathaniel; the oldest was 11 years old and the youngest 2. Son John died a short while afterwards. Another family tradition has it that he was killed by an arrow while standing in his doorway eating an ear of corn (we think this was untrue). The children were brought up by his brother, Lt. William French (Chart #2) who first lived in Cambridge, then moved to Billerica, MA, about 1654 where 30 acres in this new settlement had been set apart on Jun 9, 1652 for these four orphans.

The baptism of all five children is indicated in the Cambridge, MA Vital Records (First Congregational Church) but no dates are included. Source: The Hartland French Family, compiled by Rev. Hollis M. French, 1968, submitted by FFA member Vernon French.

John French was a tailor, d. 16 Feb 1645/6; Cambridge, MA. He m. Joan (Joanna) Siday (Syday) at Great Tey on 19 Aug 1631. They had children Mary, Sarah 1637-1710, John d. 1646, Joseph 1640-1694, and Nathaniel 1643-1711. At JohnÕs death, JohnÕs brother William administered the estate and brought up the orphan children under his guardianship and moved his own children and JohnÕs children to Billerica. JohnÕs son Joseph moved to Taunton in a section that is now Berkley [3].

DNA Test Results for DNA Group 6

Thomas (Chart 1), John (Chart 2) and William (Chart 3) all have the same DNA. John and William were brothers.

This chart shows the English ancestry of FFA Chart #3, John French, which, thru DNA, has proven to be matched with his brother William French, FFA Chart #2, and to Thomas French of Assington, Suffolk, England, FFA Chart #1. William and John were brothers, but the match to Thomas French has not yet been determined. See DNA test results for Group 6.


Town Records of Orange, Hampshire Co., MA (now Franklin Co)

Information from records in Orange, MA from Miriam Peterson Callaway, great-great granddaughter of John G. French.

A. Intent to Marry record of Joseph French and Eunice Mills, April 1792


B. Marriage record of Joseph French and Eunice Mills, 15 Apr 1792


C. March 26, 1797. Marriage record of Joseph French and Sally Smith both of Orange before Joseph Metcalf, JP


Taunton, MA Vital Records to 1850 (Births)

Published by: New England Historic Genealogic Society, Boston, MA 1929, transcribed for the web by Dave Swerdfeger. Website

Surname French
Clarinda H. [? m.], Mar. 13, 1821 [on stone with Milton R.] GR50

Ebenezer, ch. Joseph, June 27, 1682 [Ebinezer, PCR]

Edward, s. Lloyd (manufacturer), June 5, 1847, in T.
Edwin, ch. Lloyd, bp. Aug. 6, 1848, CR2

Eveline Amelia, d. Lloyd, machinist, and Eliza C., Nov. 29, 1849, in T.

George, seaman, b. New Bedford, enl. July 15, 1863, a. 30, R.R.

George C., h. Sarah S. Willis, July 22, 1833, GR50

Harriet Wentworth [-------], w. John Theodore, May 1, 1824, GR50.
James Howard Babbit, ch. Lloyd, bp. Aug. 6, 1848, CR2

James O., carpenter [dup. b. Berkley], enl. Aug. 14, 1862, a. 26, R.R.

John Theodore, h. Harriet Wentworth, Aug. 24, 1824, GR50

Maria Ware, d. Lloyd, machinist, and Maria W., Apr. 11, 1844, in T.
Milton R., Apr. 25, 1838 [on stone with Clarinda H.] GR50.
Nathan, ch. Joseph, June 28, 1686.

Phebe E. [? m.], ----, 1840 [on monument with Laruriston French] GR14.

Sarah, d. Nathaniel [TPR: Nathanill], Oct. 4, 1680

Sarah J. [-------], w. ------, Mar. 26, 1827, GR17.

Sarah S. Willis [-------], w. George C., Dec. 6, 1835, GR50.

Thomas, s. Joseph, Dec. 12, 1680

-------, chn. John, bp. Dec. --, 1784, CR4.


Since the French family emigrated soon after the Pilgrims landed and there were not many families nor marriage choices in America, intermarriages in the French family were common. Here is an intermarriage between Chart #6 and Chart #3. Note that this does not change the male French DNA test results. The son of Dorcas French and Christopher Peake was Jonathan Peake, who m. Sarah French. Sarah d. 1694 which was 23 years after her father, William, named a second dau. Sarah. We need more proof of this connection.


(1) Richard French, Ch6

(1) John French, Ch3

(2) Samuel

(2) Joseph

(3) John

(3) John

(4) Ebenezer

(4) Israel

(5) John

(5) Ephraim

¢ (6) Ebenezer French m.

(6) Ephraim

Sarah Richardson French

¢ (7) Sarah Richardson French


m. Ebenezer French


3.1.  John French, also of Dedham, Newton, Berkley, Taunton, Middleboro, Oakham, Watertown, Billerica, Fall River, Chelmsford, Frestown, Tewksbury, MA; Plainfield, Voluntown, Hartland, Hartford, Plainfield, Coventry, Franklin, Northfield, Groton, CT; Amherst, Bedford, Groton Hollow, Rumney, Plymouth, NH; Woodstock, Craftsbury, Barton, VT.

3.2. John French of Berkley and Taunton, MA. FFA member Raeola Cooke is writing a manuscript on her direct line: John m1. Sarah, m2. Joanna (1); Joseph (2), m. Experience Foster; John (3), m1, Elizabeth, m2. Hannah; Israel (4), m. Mary Derby/Darby; Elijah (5), m. Elizabeth Phillips; Elizabeth French (6), m. Benjamin Hathaway and moved to Hartland, VT; Susan Hathaway (7), m. Horace Warren; Elihue Warren (8); Susan Del Warren (9), m. Charles Edwin Ford; Charles Edward Ford (10); Raeola Ford (11), m. Harold Skeen Cooke. Entire family was from Berkley and Taunton, MA. Raeola Cooke, 2060 11th Avenue East. Twin Falls, ID 83301-6710.

3.3. "An American Ancestry" by Anna Richmond Warner French, 1894. French material extracted - descendants of John (1), Joseph (2), John (3), Israel (4), Ephraim (5). 8 1/2 x 11, p. 35-38, 108-113.

3.4. "John French, Jr. of Taunton, Berkeley, Middleboro, and Oakham, MA and His Descendants" by Henry B. Wright 1914. 42 pp. , 
8 1/2 x 11 format, 24 pp. FFA library #F119.

3.5. A Genealogy of the French Family of Hartland, CT, by Rev. Hollis Myron French, 1927. FFA Chart #3. Line is John (1), Joseph (2), Ebenezer (3), William (4-5-6). 16 pp, 8 1/2 x 11. FFA library #F293.


[1] Judy Assony, The Joseph French Family of Adams County, Indiana, June 2001, sold out.

[2] Mara French,

[3] Barry French. As you may know, the name French was very common in Berkley in the 1700s but is almost completely faded away here. In my line for the last 200 years there was only one male descendant in each generation who subsequently had a son to carry the name until my father, as I have a brother and two nephews. I am also a descendant of about nine or more on the Mayflower including John and Priscilla Alden and their oldest daughter Elizabeth Pabodie, my ancestor, when she died in the early 1700s - the first White born in North America to have descendants - had 85 grandchildren and almost 600 great-grandchildren. And John and Priscilla had other children, too, so you can see there is quite a genealogy just to the first several generations.

[4] Dean Burgess, his French ancestors moved to Moosup, CT. Some are buried at the Union Cemetery.

[5] Barbara Walters

[6] John French, Jr. of Taunton, Berkley, Middleboro, and Oakham, Massachusetts, and his Desendants.