Margaret Stilson, the granddaughter of John Brown (Samoset and John Brown – Maine), was born in 1679 in Marblehead, Massachusetts. Margaret, my 7th paternal great-grandmother, married William Hilton on June 2, 1699. They had one child, Benjamin, during their marriage. She died in November 1763 in Manchester, Massachusetts, having lived a long life of 84 years. (See previous post on Hilton Line: New Hampshire’s Founding Father)
In 1689, on Muscongus (now called Louds) Island in Maine, Indians attacked Margaret and her family. As a result, her father James Sr. was killed and she was taken prisoner along with her mother and brother to the Quebec region of Canada where they were sold to the French. Records indicate that an infant sibling (unnamed) either died immediately following the capture or on the way to Canada.
Margaret remained in French custody for 10 years before being ransomed, during that time she was reported to be a servant in the house of Monsieur Jean Bochart de Champigny, the Intendant of New France. The intendant served as an agent of the King of France and responsible for the colony’s entire civil administration. A fellow captive and servant of the intendant, Hannah Swarton, had a famous narrative of her captivity published, providing a possible window into Margaret’s experience.
A Little Side Story About the Republic of Muscongus – Muscongus Islanders, capturing a spirit of independence that matched their independence from Maine that they declared in1860. The island was left off the state map and islanders were not allowed to vote. Muscongus Island rejoined the state in 1934.
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