Rise of the Temples' Provenance of Abraham

Albert R. Temple's Provenance of Abraham of Salem

Abraham's less than regal existence in North America seems to derive from the following circumstances, documented by Albert R. Temple in "The Rise of the Temples," (Cincinnati: The Temple Family Association, 1973). This description is often criticized because the author had an objective in mind and biased his wirting - to link the TEMPLEs of North America, and especially the descendants of Abraham of Salem, to English royalty. Before buying this view, hyou should read Danny Smith's more proof-based description. There is no proof for Abraham's origins.

The oldest and most important branch in terms of the number of descendants in America is the one headed by Abraham of Salem, Massachusetts.

Recent evidence seems to substantiate the long held tradition that he was the son of Peter, sixth son of John of Stowe. If this is so, it is little wonder that Abraham decided to make his fortune in America. His father received only a few hundred pounds inheritance, and was of such feeble health that he was adjudged a lunatic a few years before he died. Besides, there was a veritable army of Temples connected one way or another with Stowe.

Abraham had a brother or cousin whose son Tobias also came to America and for many years was thought to have been a son of Abraham. This Tobias disappeared from the records of Salem after 1659 for the simple reason that he had returned to England.

But Abraham had two sons of his own - Richard and Robert, and with them the line diverges into two separate and distinct branches. It is interesting that the line headed by Richard is now in its thirteenth generation, whereas the other is in its eleventh.

His first assignment of land was evidently five acres. 21 Jan 1638, 5 add'l acres were granted him "to make him a ten acre lot." From his small holdings of real estate it is perhaps to be inferred that he was a mechanic, perhaps a tailor as was Robert Temple. 21 Jun 1637, in town meeting, Abraham Temple proposed the name of another man to be received as an inhabitant. This implies that he himself had already been so received. 25 June 1639, suit was brought against him for defaming the character of William Browne, and the plaintiff received 40 shillings damages and six shillings costs. 25 Jul 1638, Abraham Temple brought suit against Humphreys, Howes and Hauks for trespass done by their horses.

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