Henry Messinger, Jr. 1686

Henry Messinger, Jr gravestone 1686

It’s been quite a few years now that I have been researching the Boston joiners – and Trent’s been at it about 3 times as long as me.. he and I are down to the wire to finish an article about the joinery & joiners there…

I went & shot the gravestone of Henry Messinger, Jr the other day. He died on November 17, 1686. Age 32 years 2 months and 17 days. The stone is  in the Granary Burial Ground, just past the Park St subway station. I was above ground for all of 7 minutes. Jumped up from the subway, walked for maybe 3 minutes, shot the picture. Turned around to look at some more carved stones, and before I knew it, Messinger’s stone was in shadow. I jumped back on the subway & beat the rush hour by a hair…

Messinger’s death at  32 years old was of course sad for his family, but ideal for us. It means he was still working at his trade, unlike an older man who might have lessened his work load. Thus, the probate inventory should have all his tools. But in this case, they are not itemized. Still, over £11 worth of tools and timber. Plus, in the house there’s 20 upholstered chairs. Did he make the frames himself? Ahh, we’ll never know.

Here it is:

Inventory of the Estate of Henry Messenger late of Boston, Joyner decd taken & apprized by us whose names are underwritten, 30th Nov 1686

Impr. His wearing Apparell, hatts, shoes, stockins, shirts etc and his Armes, given away by will amongst his Brethren 25:4:00
It: his small wearing Linnen 3:10:00
In the Halle:  
1 doz. Russia Leather chaires at 11/8 6:12:00
2 Tables at 24s a ps 1:08:00
1 pa of brasses for the chimney 1:10:00
Glasses & Earthen ware    :07:00
 In the Chamber over the halle:  
8 Turkey worke chaires at 14s 5:12:00
1 Chest of drawers 2:10:00
1 feather bed, boulster, pillows, ffurniture of coverings, curtains, vallents and bedestead 17:00:00
1 table 25s  1 looking glass & brasses 18 2:03:00
1 pr brasses for the chimney 20s 2 stands 8 1:08:00
5 pr of sheets 6/5 1 doz of Napkins 18 7:03:00
1 doz of diaper towells: eight coarse ones –:18:00
5 pillowbeers –:17:00
In the Chamber over the Kitchin  
One feather bed, furniture and bedstead 6-00-00
1 ???att table, one chest & deske and Trunke 1-10-00
1 case of knives   -7-00
In the Garret  
1 flock bed furniture and bedstead 2-06-00
1 feather bed furniture and bedstead 5-05-00
A meale trough 6s  four bushlls of wheat 16s 1-02-00
In the Kitchin  
1 Table (price) eight sedge bottom chaires (price) 1-12-00
1 Hamaker and Morings (price) one Chest 2-00-00
1 looking glass and brush   -07-00
Iron ware  belonging to the chimney 1-02-00
Smoothing box and heater   -05-00
Bookes 40  Pewter and Tin ware 50 4-10-00
Brass kettles and skillets 4-15-00
Iron pots and Kettle 25  lign??d vitae morter pestle ??? 1-15-00
Lumber in the Cellar 20s severall small things 12 s 1-12-00
Firewood in the yard 3-03-00
A dwelling house & garden and land the apprces 200-00-00
Timber, Boards, planks workeing tooles (etc) at theShop, apprized by Mr Cunnibell and Tho: Warren, Joyners

At Eleven pounds 16/8

A parcel of glew -12-10
one Cow 2-00-00
Money since the death of my husband for worke done forSome frenchmen 2-05-00
Debts due to or from the estate not known