The following material is from pages 39 to 91 of the Book Genealogy of the Descendants of Thomas French who came to America from Nether Heyford, Northamptonshire, England … compiled, written and published by Howard Barclay French, and printed privately in 1909. This book is available as a free full download From Google Books.
Rachel French was born March 24, 1664. We suppose that she was born in the village, town or parish in which she was baptized, i.e. in Nether Heyford, Northampton, England. She was baptized April 3, 1664 at the church of Saints Peter and Paul, in Heyford, Northampton, England. She came to America with her parents and family in 1680, They sailed from London, in the ship Kent, with Gregory Marlowe, master; this was the same vessel that brought the first company of Quaker Settlers to Burlington County in 1677. Her Father’s family at the time they came to America, consisted of Mother, Father, and nine children, four sons and five daughters. As two older sisters had died in England Rachel was the oldest living child, she being sixteen years of age, and the youngest child, Jane, was not yet four years of age. Her father Thomas French settled in Willing Boro township in Burlington county on a tract of about 600 acres that bordered on the Rancocus creek which drains into the Delaware river about 5 miles downstream and his land was about four miles south west from Burlington Village.
In the year 1687, Seven years after arriving New Jersey, at the age of 23 or 24, Rachel French married Matthew Allen, a widower, who had two stepsons, Isaac Conrow and Jacob Conrow. It seems that he also had a charge, one Anthony Frier; whose relationship to the Conrow and Allen families is unknown.
Rachel French and Mathew Allen had 4 children, Mathew, Mercy, Mary, and Thomas. Matthew Allen died in September or October of 1701.
Rachel married Second, on the second day of the 12th month 1702, Hugh Sharp, son of William and Hannah Sharp. Rebecca and Hugh had two daughters, Hannah Sharp and Rebecca Sharp. Rachel and Hugh were married for 40 years as Hugh died in 1742.
Geanalogical Data for Rachel French, her husbands and their Children:
p83-84, — RACHEL FRENCH (Thomas, 1) born. March 24th, 1664. Baptized April 3rd, 1664, at Church S. S. Peter and Paul, Nether Heyford, England.
Rachel French married. First, 1687, Mathew Allen. Mathew Allen had married first, in England a Widow Conrow, who came with him to America with her two sons, Isaac and Jaacob Conrow, and perhapa a third boy or young man Anthony Frier. Matthew Allen died. October, 1701.
Rachel French married. Second, 12th mo. 9th, 1702, Hugh Sharp, son of William and Hannah Sharp. Hugh Sharp was born. 4th mo. 3rd, 1668. Hugh Sharp died.in 1742, when Rachel was in her 78th year.
Children in this Extended Family
— Isaac Conrow, born about 1676 -1680
— Jacob Conrow, born about 1678 - 1682
— Anthony Frier, born about 1675 - 1680
16— MATHEW ALLEN, JR. born. 8th mo. 23rd, 1688. married, 1711, Grace Jones.
17— MERCY ALLEN born. 1st mo. 13th, 1692. married. First, 1710, Thomas Middleton. married. Second, 10th mo. 2nd, 1730, John Hugg. married. Third, 2nd mo. 19th, 1732, Thomas Lippincott.
18— MARY ALLEN born: 8th mo. 23rd, 1695. married. First, Jarves Stockdell. married Second. 5th mo. 15th, 1741, John Mickle.
19— THOMAS ALLEN; b. 2nd mo. 7th. 1699.
20— HANNAH SHARP; born 1703-05, married, 8th mo. 29th, 1724, John Brientnall.
21— REBECCA SHARP; born 1705-07, married, First, 2nd mo. 26th, 1727, William Coate. married, Second, 1754, Joseph Lippincott.
Robert Allen, grandson of Mathew Allen, m. Mary . Their daughter, Margery Allen, m. Job Rogers, and their daughter, Rhoda Rogers, m. Daniel Estell. Mary Estell. daughter of Daniel and Rhoda Estell, m. Morton McMichael, Mayor of Philadelphia, 1866, 1867,
MATHEW ALLEN A signer of the " Concessions and Agreements,"
Mathew Allen became one of the early English settlers of Burlington County, New Jersey. Apparently he was possessed of considerable means and had great faith in the future of the new country. In 1680, he bought of John Smith of " Christeene Creek" [Delaware] 3200 acres of land located along the Delaware near (p 84) Rancocas creek and extending eastward. Some 500 acres of the tract he conveyed to Isaac Conoroe in 1683, " out of good will and kindness which he hath and beareth unto the said Isaac Conoroe," also a further 500 acres to Isaac’s brother, Jacob Conoroe, under same conditions; and the descendants of these men have ever since lived in the same vicinity. Isaac and Jacob Conoroe were evidently the step-sons of Mathew Allen, as from contemporary records he appears to have been married to their widowed mother previous to his marriage to Rachel French in 1687. He is frequently referred to in old deeds as the " father-in-law " of Isaac and Jacob Conoroe ; a term synonymous in colonial days with step-father. Mathew Allen became a farmer resident of Chester township ; he was also a carpenter, and took an active interest in the affairs of the community. He was elected constable of Chester township in 1699 and served as tax assessor during part of 1701, the year of his death. In the month of May of that year, he was one of the signers of the address of the inhabitants of West Jersey to King William, asking his " Sacred Majesty " to assume the civil government of the Colony, many things having been suffered under proprietary control. This curious paper, so expressive of the characteristic loyalty of British subjects, concluded as follows
"That the great and glorious God who of his wonderfull Goodness & mercy hath sett you over his Great People will preserve your sacred Majesty from the wicked contrivances, of all those who shall endeavour to oppose your Majesty in the great workes which lyes before You is and shall be the fervent & Constant Prayers of Us who crave leave to subscribe Our Selves your Majestys most humble Suppliants."
p 84, 85
DEED, JOHN SMITH TO MATHEW ALLEN The following is an abstract of deed bearing date August 14th, 1680, of John Smith "of Christeene Creek in America (yeoman) to Mathew Allen of Burlington in West Jersey, in America (carpenter)." CONSIDERATION Three score & Tenne pounds in good Country pay — grants bargains, sells &c — unto said Mathew Allen his heirs & Assigns forever (in his Actual possession now being by vertue of a bargaine & sale to him made for one whole yeare by Indenture bearing date the day before the date hereof & by vertue of the statue for transferring uses into possession) All that his Lott or parcell of Land allready laid forth lyeing & being neare Rancokus Creek upon Dellaware River in America being comonly called the great Lott & was first laid forth conteyning by Estimacon Three Thousand Two hundred & odde Acres or thereabouts. And allsoe all ye his Lott or Lotts of Lands lyeing or being in the Islands of Burlington aforesaid Togeather alsoe with all such parte & parts share & shares as shall belong or appertayne to the said Lott or Lotts in Burlington Towne bounds when the said Town bounds shall be devided & laid forth with sll privileges &c to them apperteyning (except & reserved out of this present deed or grant, onto the said John Smith his heirs & assigns one Acre & an halfe of Land in Burlington Island aforesaid lyeing to the High Street there & adjoyning to a Lott of Land belonging to the said Mathew Allen and except alsoe one Lott or parcell of Land in Burlington aforesaid conteyning by estimacon Eight Acres, or thereabouts be the same more lesse in the tenure or occupacon of William Brightwell or of his affignes) — all deeds, writings coppies &c to be made at the charge of said Mathew Allen his heirs & Assignes, (The Some of one shillinge & Six pence comonly called three Guilders yearely to be paid by said Mathew Allen his heires & afsignes onto the said John Smith his heires & afsignes at the Feast dayes of St. John the Baptist, if lawfully demanded as a Cheife Rent or Qnitt Rent onlly excepted or (foreprised) &c John Smith Sealed & deliverded in presence of John White Tho: Revell Alsoe Sealed & Deliverded in the presence of William Emley Thomas Lambert, Tho: Fairman & Tho: Revelpages 85, & 86
WILL OF MATHEW ALLEN, 1701
In the Name of God Amen This being my last will and testament: by which I make void any other wills whatsoever: this sevententh of the seventh month and in the thirteenth year of his majesties Reign : and in the year of our Lord one thousand seven hundred and one: I Matthew Allin of the Province of New West jersy and township of Chester being wake of body yet of a perfect memory and mind : I doe Constitute and ordeign my beloved wife Rachel Alin and my son Mathew Alin to be sole Executors: to performe my will as foloweth: I give to my son Mathew my plantation & all the land belonging to it except two hundred Ackers where Isaac Conorow now liveth (it fhall begin at the Run and so to John Adamses path so along the path half a mile so to the Run again) I give it to him when at age: to him and his heirs for ever also thirty pounds in Catle: I give to my son thomas Allin: the before mentioned two hundred Ackers and goshon lieing on Northhampton River: with thirty pounds in Catle: when at Age to him his heirs and assigns forever : I doe order that my wife or her Assigns pay to my two dafters Marsy [Mercy] and Mary Allin thre hundred pounds and my son Mathew or his heirs or Assigns shall pay one hundred pounds when they shall arive at the Age of twenty years to them and their heirs or Assigns for ever and if either Child, dye, its portion shall be devided equally between the Rest: the interest of the four hundred shall be for the bringing up of the Children — Also I give my wife the lot of land in burlington to her or her Assigns for ever and the remaining part of the stock I doe order my wife to pay Alinor Conorow, the daughter of Isaac Conorow five pounds when at Age : Also that Negro dick be sold for the use of the plantation allso I give Isaac Conorow three shilings. Also to Jacob Conorow three shilings Also to Anthony frier three shillings Sealed and delivered in the presents of Abraham heulings Isaac Conarroe
Octob' 17, 1701 Abraham Heulings and Isaac Conarroe appearing before us, two of the Justices in the County of Burlington upon their Solemn attestacon did declare that they were present and saw and heard the above Testator Matthew Allen signe Seal deliver Publish and declare tje above Instrument as his last will & Testamment & sett their hands thereto as Witnesses & further deposeth that to the best of their Understanding, the Testator was of sound and disposeing mind & memory at the Executeing thereof Tho: Gardiner Sam" Furnis
BOND, RACHEL ALLEN, RICHARD AND CHARLES FFRENCH, 1701. Know all men by these presents That We, Rachel Allen of the County of Burlington, in the Province of West New Jersey, Widdow, Matthew Allen; Richard French, and Charles French all of the same County yeomen, are holden and stand firmly bound unto the Honorbl* Coll. Andrew Hamilton, Governor of the said Province in the Sum of Fifteen hundred pounds of current silver money of the said Province To be paid to the said Governor or to his lawfull Successors for the time being To the w** Paymt well and truely to be made We bind ourselves and every of us our and every of our heires Executors and Adminintrators for the whole and in the whole joyntly and severally firmly by these Presents Sealed with our Seals dated in Burlington the 17" day of October Anno Dom 1701 Annoqe R. R* Gulielmi tertij Anglis & c decimo tertio The Condicon of the above Obligacon is such That if the above bonnden Rachel Allen, and Matthew Allen, (one the Wife, the other the son and also) Executors of the last will and Testament of Matthew Allen late of Chester in the said County of Burlington yeoman decd, do and shall truelv and justly fullfill and performe the last Will and Testament of the said Testator being the day of the date hereof proved and given into ye Registers Office at Burlington aforesaid just and true Accounts of and concerning the same Estate late of and belonging to the said Testator w" nowhich is or hereafter shall come into their or either of their custody possession or knowledge when thereunto lawfully required, and thereof and of every part thereof discharge themselves according to Law That then the above Obligacon to be void & of none Effect or else to be and remains in full force and virtue Rachel Allen her mark Sealed and delivered In the presence of Tho: Gardiner Samuell Furnis Tho: Eves Edward Honloke
p 89 Hugh Sharp
Hugh Sharp was a native of Northampton, England, whence he came to Pennsylvania, a lad of fourteen years of age, with his father the year of Penn's arrival. His family settled in Pennsbury, where he remained until he married Rachel, daughter of Thomas ffrench, widow of Mathew Allen, of Burlington County, New Jersey. Evidently having had educational advantages he became a prominent, useful and influential citizen, of high standing in religious as well as business circles. He was a leading Friend, being a member of Burlington Monthly Meeting, and for some years an elder. He located in Chester township, becoming owner of several large plantations in that vicinity. In 1715 he received a grant of 3700 acres of unsurveyed lands from the Council of Proprietors, 230 acres of which were located in Hunterdon county and 400 acres in Morris county. Hugh Sharp's special gifts as a writer and man of affairs were milked in various ways. His signature, as a witness, is found on wills and other documents and he prepared many inventories. He drew petitions to the legislature, notably for a bridge over the Rancocas, in 1709. The same year he served in that body as a member for the western division of Burlington county, the first Assembly of Governor Lord Lovelace. He signed a memorial to Governor Burnet, "in obedience to the order of Council, appointing a time for the Proprietors for exhibiting their reasons why the bill for repealing an act for running and ascertaining the line of partition between the eastern and western divisions of New Jersey, should not pass." This was in 1721. February 18, 1708-9, Hugh Sharp was appointed guardian of Thomas Allen, " a minor of the age of eleven years or thereabouts, son of Mathew Allen, late of the county of Burlington, deceased, and Rachel the now wife of the said Hugh Sharp." He entered bond in the sum of 500 pounds, April 11, 1709p 90
WILL OF HUGH SHARP, 1741
I Hugh Sharp of the Township of Wellingborrow and County of Burlington & province of West New Jersey Esquire thanks be to God being of perfect Sound disposing mind and memory do make & ordain this my last will and Testament in manner and form following that is to say Principally I give & Recomend my Spiritts into the hands of God that gave It and my Body to the Earth to be decently Buried att the discretion of my Executors hereafter named And as Touching such worldly Estate wherewith ¡it hath pleased God to bless me in this Life I give and Bequeath the Same in maner and form as followeth — Item I give and Bequeath unto my dear and Loveing wife Rachel Sharp all that my Lott of Land in Burlington, fronting Pearl Street and Rnning half way Back to Water Street to her and to her heirs and Assigns forever I also Give unto my Said wife the Sum of thirty pounds proclamation money to be paid to her annually out of my Estate dureing her Natural Life by my Executors in Lew of her thirds of my Estate which She is Therewith Contented. Item I Give onto my daughter-in-Law Mary Micle the wife of John Micle all maner of Debts doe or Owing unto me from her. Item I give unto the Monthly Meeting of Friends in Burlington the sum of five pounds to be paid into the hands of Caleb Raper Esq' in twelve months after my Decease for the use. of the afloresaid Meeting. And wheras I have Sold to my Son in Law William Coate my plantation, whereon I now dwell for Eight Hundred pounds Item I Give unto my Said Son Wm. Coate the Sum of. four Hundred pounds thereof he paying the Interest thereof for which he hath given me bonds and to my Son in Law John Brintnale the other four hundred pounds. And it is my will that after my Decease and my wife's that my Estate Shall be Equally Divided Between my two Sons in Law as aforesaid, And I do nominate and appoint my Said two Sons in Law John Brientnall and William Coate Executors of this my Last will and Testament And I doe Hereby Revoake and Dissanul all former and other Wills and Testaments by me Heretofore made making and ordaining this my Last will & Testament In wittness whereof I have hereunto Sett my hand and Seale This fifth day of the Eighth Month Comonly Called October and in the year of our Lord 1741 Signed Sealed published pronounced and Declared by the Said Hugh Sharp as his Last will and Testament in the presence of Peter Fearon Abrm Farrington Joshua Raperp 91Abraham Farrington and Joshua Raper Two of the witnesses to the within written will being of the People called Quakers on their Solemn affirmation which they took according to law did declare & affirm that they Saw Hugh Sharp the Testator therein named Sign & Seal the same & heard him publish pronounce & declare the within written Instrument to be his last will and Testament and that at the doing thereof the said Testator was of sound disposing mind memory and understanding so far as they know and as they Verily believe & that Peter Fearon the other witness was present and Signed his name as an evidence thereto together with these affirmants in presence of the saod Testator Abr" Farrington 1 Joshua Raper Affirmed at Burlington the Thirteenth Day of January A. D. 1742 before me Joseph Rose, Surrogate - Be it Remember'd that the last will and Testament of Hugh Sharp deceased having Been duly proved as abovesaid probate & letters Testamentary were granted by his Excellency Lewis Morris Esq' Governonr &c. unto Wm Coates &Jo* Brientnall the Executors therein named who being duly affirmed well & Truly to perform the Said will to Exhibit a True and perfect Inventory and render a Just accoount when thereunto lawfully required Given under y* prerogative Seal of Said province at Burlington the Second Day of March A. D. 1742 p Arch’ Home Regr. &c