Notes on the
Thomas Fordham Family
of Edgartown

This is another very early Azorean family in Edgartown. The family was on the island from before 1859 until at least 1883 or so, perhaps later. Can you help us sort this family out?Please contact us!

Capt. Thomas E. Fordham

He was born in Fayal about 1827-8 (although the exact year of his birth varies between records: c. 1827-8 [marr. Rec.], c. 1829-30 [1860 census], c. 1826-7 [1870 census], or c. 1828-9 [1880 census].) He was the son of Enos Fordham and Eliza _____.
He was called an Edgartown mariner as early as 1859, and was later called a "master mariner" and a "sea captain." He appears in the 1860, 1870, and 1880 censuses of Edgartown.
In 1878, he sold a house and building on an extension of Summer Street, adjacent to the South Schoolhouse, to John Dillingham. Fordham had bought this house from Edgar Marchant.
[Find deed in vol. 39, pp. 2-5!] There is a reference to him living on Summer Street, Edgartown roughly 1883, when Fales Oliver boarded with him. (Oliver later married a sister of Mariana Mendence and moved to California see Mendence notes.)
He died before 1908 (and probably before 1900, as he doesn't appear in that census.)
[Check Edg. VR!]

He m. Mrs. Ann Frances (Brice) Pray of Edgartown on 24 May 1859 in Edgartown.
She was born 11 Feb. 1831 in Edgartown, the daughter of James Brice and Ann A. Ripley.
She married (1st) Edgartown mariner Joseph Pray, who was born in Fayal. They had a son James Brice Pray, born 13 Feb 1852 in Edgartown.
She probably died during 1870-1880 in Edgartown.
[Check Edg. VR!]

In 1860, the family was living with Ann's mother and stepfather, Manuel and Ann A. (Ripley) DeSusan. (Ann's father James Brice died in Edgartown in 1845, and his widow Ann married a Portuguese resident, Manuel DeSusan, son of Joseph and Mary DeSusan. Manuel DeSusan was b. in St. George c. 1810-11, and Ann was the daughter of Freeman and Betsey Ripley of Edgartown.) By 1870 only Ann DeSusan was living with the Fordham family.

[Are there any more? Check Edg. VR!]

10. Thomas Arey Fordham, born 3 May 1859 in Edgartown. He died in Edgartown on 26 Sept. 1860 of "ulceration of bowels."

11. Nathan E. Fordham, born 22 Jun 1864 in Edgartown. In 1880, he appears as a student living with Maria and Eunice Ripley. He does not appear again in the 1900 census.

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