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Plaque location, 100 Lyme Street, Roger Tory Peterson Estuary Center


On May 9, 1729, Joseph Peck Jr. sold one certain molato girl of about three years old called Jane for 25 pounds to Benjamin Reed. Town meeting records show that Peck’s father and Reed’s father exported large quantities of barrel staves from Lyme. The town’s vital records tell us that Reed was 29 when he purchased Jane, and that his twin daughters Margaret and Mindewill were born ten months later. No further traces of Jane have been found. 


Jane may well be the daughter of Temperance, whom Joseph Peck Jr. sold to Richard Lord the same year the “molato girl” was born. The child was likely named after Temperance’s mother Jane, a Narragansett Indian captured at age two in King Philip’s War. Perhaps Oxford, who married Temperance a week after Peck sold her, was Jane’s father. Or perhaps Jane was the child of  Peck’s “man servant” Jack, whom church records show died in 1738. Jack is likely the “black boy” that Peck’s account book shows being hired out with a harrow in 1718. Only a few miles separated the farms of Joseph Peck Jr. and Richard Lord, but whether Temperance cared for Jane before she was sold at age three cannot be known. 

23 Jane bill of sale.jpg

In 1729 Joseph Peck, Jr., sold a molato child named Jane, age three, for 25 pounds. Jane may have been the daughter of Temperance, whom Peck sold in 1726.

24 Peck account book.jpg

Joseph Peck Jr., account book showing hiring out of black boy

Research into the lives of those enslaved in Lyme is ongoing and sometimes uncovers new details that may not have been known when the stone was installed. The text on this page reflects the most current information. 

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