- Reuben was only 18 years old when his father, Elijah Bisbee, died in 1743. Reuben's brothers, Joseph and Benjamin, were minor children and were placed by the court under the guardianship of one Joshua Pearce, possibly a relative of their mother. In 1748, at age 23, Reuben petitioned the court and was granted co-guardianship of his brothers. In 1754 Reuben settled accounts with Joshua Pearce and discharged him as guardian.[A]
In 1748, Reuben Bisbee, cordwainer of Plympton, purchased 30 acres from Benjamin Samson Jr. of Plympton for eight-hundred pounds of the old tenor. The land is only described as that purchased by Benjamin from his father, who had purchased it from Samuel Cushman, "reference being had to the records for the boundaries therof with buildings and fencing, always reserving unto Benjamin Cushman the one half of all the iron ore on said land...."[B]
Reuben's mother, Eleanor Pierce, died in 1749, leaving Reuben a nine-acre parcel of land in Plympton. That same year Reuben Bisbee, cordwainer, sold it for two-hundred pounds to Benjamin and Lydia Sampson.[C]
In 1752 the Plympton town clerk recorded that "A white ram with large horns [was] taken up in Plympton by Reuben Bisbe within the enclosure of [brother] Elijah Bisbee on the 15th day of September, new style, 1752."[D]
A 1762 Court Record from Plymouth shows that Reuben Bisbe and his wife, who came from Connecticut Colony, but who last resided in Middleboro, but were now residing in the "furnace house" in Kingston, were ordered by the Constable to leave town.[E]
In June, 1776, Reuben Bisbe and his wife, who had came from Middleboro in June, 1775 were ordered by the Constable to depart the town of Plimpton.[E]
In May, 1777, a Judge of Probate from Hanover declared Reuben and Elijah Bisbee in default on a 100-pound note.[E]
When Reuben married widow Eunice House, her daughter, Eunice Pratt, had been under the guardianship of one Nathaniel Pratt since 1760. In 1777, Eunice Pratt, being over the age of 14, exercised her right to select her own guardian, choosing Reuben Bisbe.[F]
In September, 1777, private Reuben Bisbe of Capt. Thomas Samson's co., Col. Theophilus Cotton's regt., Gen. Palmer's brigade engaged in a month-long secret mission against Newport, R.I.[G]
In April of 1778, Reuben Bisbe of Plympton was listed among the men mustered in Plymouth Co. by James Hatch, Muster Master, into Capt. Thomas Turner's co., for eight months service.[G]
In 1788, Reuben and Eunice Bisbee of Plympton sold for eighteen pounds all the land in Plympton that Eunice had enherited from her former husband, Joshua Pratt, late of Plympton, to one Joshua Pratt of Plympton.[H]
Reuben and Eunice Bisbee's graves have not been located. Reuben's first wife, Lydia Faunce is buried at the "Old Plympton Burying Place" in the same family plot as his brother, Elijah Bisbee.
[A] Plymouth County Probate Records on Microfilm, vol. 9, p. 172, Mayflower Society, Plymouth, Mass.
Plymouth County Probate Records on Microfilm, vol. 9, pp. 172-3, Mayflower Society, Plymouth, Mass.
Plymouth County Probate Records on Microfilm, vol. 11, p. 109, Mayflower Society, Plymouth, Mass.
Plymouth County Probate Records on Microfilm, vol. 13, p. 370, Mayflower Society, Plymouth, Mass.
[B] Plymouth County Deed on Microfilm, book 44, page 242, Mayflower Society, Plymouth, Mass.
[C] Plymouth County Deed on Microfilm, book 40, page 201, Mayflower Society, Plymouth, Mass.
[D] Records of Plympton County Clerk, Plympton, Mass.
[E] Plymouth Court Records,1686-1859, NEHGS.
[F] Jayne Pratt Lovelace, The Pratt Directory, 1995 Rev. Ed,. Ancestor House, 417 W. McNair St., Chandler, AZ 85224.
[G] Massachusetts Soldiers and Sailors of the Revolutionary War, Secretary of the Commonwealth, Boston, Wright & Potter Printing Co., State Printers, 18 Post Office Square, 1896.
[H] Plymouth County Deed on Microfilm, book 94, page 96, Mayflower Society, Plymouth, Mass.