William Gerrish was born June 24, 1842, son of George Washington Gerrish and Sarah Howard (Hanson) Gerrish and died April 12, 1903. His line of New England ancestors extends back for seven generations, beginning with Captain William Gerrish, born August 20, 1617, who came from Bristol, England, and settled in Newbury, Mass., in 1639. Captain William Gerrish died in Salem, Mass., August 9, 1687. His first wife was Joanna, daughter of Percival Lowell and widow of John Oliver, their marriage occurring April 17, 1644. Their eldest son was Captain John Gerrish, born in Newbury, Mass., May 15, 1646, who married, August 19, 1667, Elizabeth Waldron, daughter of Major Richard Waldron, of Dover, N.H., and died December 19, 1714.
Robert Elliot Jr & Sr George Vaughan, Andrew Peppermill Timothy Gerrish deed.
Next in direct line was Colonel Timothy Gerrish, son of Captain John and Elizabeth Waldren, born in Dover, N. H., April 2, 1684. Captain John was quartermaster in 1670, captain in 1672, high constable in 1683, member of the special General Assembly, 1684, Representative from Dover, 1689-90, Royal Councillor of New Hampshire, 1692, Assistant Justice of the Supreme Court of Pleas of New Hampshire, April 27, 1697, until his death in 1714. Colonel Timothy Gerrish's sixth son, Andrew Gerish, lived in various places, including Dover, New Hampshire, and there his son, Timothy Gerrish, was born April 7, 1756. He was a gold and silversmith, but for the sixteen years preceding his death at Portsmouth, New Hampshire, December 30, 1815, was deputy sheriff and jail warden. He married, February 6, 1780, Dorothy Patterson, of Portsmouth. Their sixth child, Dorothy Gerrish, born January 1, 1791, died September 27, 1867, married (first) September 1, 1808, William Senter. Among their seven children were sons: William, Timothy, Gerrish and Andrew. William, the eldest, and Andrew, the youngest, were both expert jewelers and were associated in the business in Portland, Maine, the firm Lowell & Senter, becoming large and prosperous. Below Gerrish Silver Description: COIN SILVER,NH,B1753,FIDDLE,WINGS
Another son Oliver Gerrish born Jan 4 1796, Portsmouth NH. Married Sarah Little on Jan 6 1825 in Portland ME and died Dec 3 1888, Portland MEApprenticed in 1810 to John Gaines in Portsmouth NH He worked from 1817 to 1819 as a goldsmith and jeweler in Boston MA as a journeyman for various firms. Portland ME, 1819-1888: president of Portland Savings Bank, Secretary and Treasurer of Relief Fire Society, a prominent Mason, and active in a large number of charitable and philanthropic organizations. He worked from 1819 to 1857 as a silversmith, jeweler, and watchmaker in Portland ME taking the stand formerly occupied by Joshua Tolford at 6 Jones Row, Exchange Street. Master to Abner Lowell c 1825 in Portland ME. Master to William Senter abt 1828 in Portland ME.
Back to William who married November 14, 1706, Sarah, daughter of the Hon. Robert Elliot and Sarah (Fryer) Elliot, of Newcastle, N. H. Sarah received as her wedding dowry the eastern end of Champernowe Island containing nearly one thousand acres and which for nearly two hundred years has been known as Gerrish's Island and the residence of Gerrish descendants where. the couple settled on Gerrish's Island, at Kittery and he died November 19, 1755. He was a wealthy farmer and merchant of Kittery, Maine, as his father had been of Dover, New Hampshire, and filled many public offices. He was Councillor for Massachusetts and Colonel of the West Yorkshire Regiment. His son John, who was born in Dover, N.H., February 6, 1710, and died in March, 1750, married November 21, 1734, Margery, daughter of Dr. George and Joanna (Pepperrell) Jackson, of Kittery, Me., and a niece of Sir William Pepperrell.
Gerrish chandlery in Kittery Maine Maritime Museum
George Gerrish, son of John and Margery, was born in Dover, N. H., April 9, 1737. He married Mary James, of Portsmouth, N.H., daughter of John and Ann (Lord) James. Her father served in the Continental army as a private in Captain Eliphalet Daniels's company, which in 1775 was stationed at Fort Sullivan. George Gerrish settled in Lebanon, Me., in 1776.
His son, Captain George Gerrish, grandfather of William, was born in Dover, N.H., October 19, 1775. He settled in Lebanon, Me., and married Elizabeth Thompson Furbush (February 21, 1799), a daughter of Richard and Jane (McCrillis) Furbush, of that town. His title of Captain was derived from his rank in the militia of York County, Maine. He died in Chelsea, Mass., January 26, 1850.
George W. Gerrish, son of Captain George and father of Lieutenant William Gerrish, was born in Lebanon, Me., January 20, 1809. In 1836 he settled in Chelsea, and engaged in the real estate business, becoming one of the largest operators in real estate in the State of Massachusetts; and he was for about forty years the largest individual taxpayer in Chelsea. At the time of his death, which took place in Chelsea, April 24, 1876, he had over one hundred and twenty-five buildings in process of construction. His wife, Sarah Howard Hanson, was a daughter of Israel and Sarah (Howard) Hanson, of Dover, N.H. They had eight children; namely, Israel Hanson, Captain George Albert (pic below), Joanna Elizabeth, Hiram Augustus, Joanna Elizabeth (second), William, Sarah Augusta, and Lydia Caroline. Israel, George Albert, and William were soldiers of the Civil War.
William Gerrish was educated in the public schools of Chelsea, and fitted for college at the Chauncy Hall School of Boston. On the breaking out of the great Civil War he enlisted for three years in Company H, formed in Chelsea and belonging to the First Massachusetts Regiment, but was discharged on account of disability. He spent six months endeavoring to recuperate his health, and then entered Norwich University in Vermont, where he spent two years in study. On February 4, 1864, he was commissioned First Lieutenant of the Twentieth United States Colored Infantry, a regiment raised, equipped, and turned over to the United States government by the Union League of New York City, which took part in the capture of Mobile and several other engagements, and which was mustered out in the fall of 1865. While with the regiment Lieutenant Gerrish served as Acting Assistant Adjutant-General for the district of Carrollton, La.
On being mustered out he went to Chicago, but returned East in 1867, and in the following year entered the office of his father. He has since remained a resident of Chelsea. He belongs to the order of the Knights of Malta. For ten years he held the office of Assessor in the city of Chelsea. He is an expert with the rifle, having served as a member of the American team in two international rifle contests. In 1880 he made the highest score at long range ever made. So far as known, the Lieutenant has made ten of the largest scores of any man in the world of which there is authentic record.
Lieutenant Gerrish was married in Chicago, June 11, 1872, by the Rev. Robert Collyer, to Emily Gertrude, daughter of Artemas Spofford and Susan Wheeler (Turner) Patten. His children arc four in number: Susan Louise, born April 12, 1873; William Patten, born September 10, 1874; Charles Victor, born May 15, 1876; and George Howard, born August 15, 1877, of Harvard University, 1901.