From Reverend Richard Mather (1596-1669) to Stephen Mather, the “Mather” line spans nine generations. But that, quite literally, is only half the story. As each Mather male married, their wives grafted their own histories and genealogies into the steadily and sturdily expanding family tree.
We devoted an earlier blog to Michael Floy, the great-grandfather of Jane Thacker Floy, Stephen’s wife. Michael was a renowned horticulturist whose nursery spanned several acres in upper Manhattan. And we looked at Edward Walker, Stephen’s maternal grandfather, who owned the largest bookbindery in New York City in the mid-nineteenth century. But now for three others…
JOHN WAKEMAN. (c. 1598-1661) was the great5grandfather of Happy Osborn Wakeman, who married Stephen’s grandfather, Joseph Mather in 1816. John Wakeman signed the New Haven Compact in 1638, was deacon of the First Congregational Church, and served as treasurer of the Colony of New Haven.
WILLIAM BREWSTER. (1657-1644) was the great-great grandfather of Sarah Noyes, who married Timothy Mather, Stephen’s great4grandfather. When the Mayflowerlanded, Brewster became the senior elder and served as advisor to Governor Bradford. [The lineage is Timothy Mather/Sarah Noyes; Moses Noyes/Ruth Pickett; John Pickett/Ruth Brewster; Jonathan Brewster/Lucretia Oldham; William Brewster/Mary.]
MAJOR-GENERAL HUMPHREY ATHERTON. (c. 1601-1661) was the father of Elizabeth Atherton, wife of Timothy Mather, son of Rev. Richard Mather and Stephen’s great6grandfather. Atherton held the highest military rank in colonial New England. He was captain of the Ancient and Honorable Artillery Company, which today remains the oldest chartered military organization in North America. He was involved in the prosecution of individuals accused of witchcraft. And according to an entry in findagrave, "While returning homein the dark after reviewing his troops on Boston Common his horse was struck by a stray cow. In the collision he was thrown and killed. Sept. 16, 1661."