Robert Wheaton Part three

In my continuing quest to construct a real identity for Robert I went looking for the reference to his occupation and I thought I would post here. It comes from a genealogy full of inaccuracies: “Lincoln, Pearce, Porter & Related Families”  by William Ensign Lincoln 1930 Pittsburg, PA.

More specifically the beginning of the section on Wheatons on page 200:
“Wheaton Genealogy From the papers of the late Edward D. Pearce, Jr., and from a genealogical tablet owned by the late Miss Mary Riversof Boston, 1878, which is recorded in the Records of the Town of Providence, Book 2, Folio 50, for Registering births, marriages, etc Aug. 31, 1775, by Theodore Foster, Clerk.”
This genealogy mixes up Robert’s sons as his brothers and has other inaccuracies however the statement on Robert’s occupation is likely correct:

He was a tanner and appearances of the tannery were still visible (date?) by Clayey Brook, so-called not far from Mr. Watson’s house.”

The Watson property was indeed adjacent the Wheaton Farm and ‘Clayey Brook’ is a ‘bound’ mentioned in early property transactions later referred to as ‘Cleary Brook.’

This would account for the farm being a distance from the main Rehoboth Village and other more intensive developments as tanning is a particular smelly occupation. It also was dependent on sources of wood or bark and water to properly tan the hides. The description of 17th century tanning here may be of interest.

1 Comments on “Robert Wheaton Part three”

  1. I can attest to the odorous nature of tanning. One factory was close to my high school. Prayed for the wind to change occasionally. It was also next to a stream and used significant amounts of water. So the Cleary Brook comment fits with the siting.

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