Richard Sikes (c1600-1676)

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Richard SikesEdit

Sykes, Sikes, Sickes, Seyckes, Sike, SykeEdit

Vital statisticsEdit




The first record of Richard Sykes in New England was when he joined the Church in Dorchester, Massachusetts the 4th day 9th month 1639, November 4, 1639. It's not known on what ship he arrived. A relation of religious experience or confessions was a necessary prerequisite to church membership in 1639. This would have taken some time so Richard probably arrived in the Spring of 1639 at the latest. The next record showing him is becoming a Freeman, 13th day 3th month 1640, May 13, 1640 at Cambridge Mass. He is included in the list, in sequence, with several other Dorchester men. He would have to have been 21 to become a Freeman so that makes his birth in England before May 1619.

Phebe Sykes joined the church in Dorchester on the 9 day 4 month 1640, 9 June 1640. This is the first record of Phebe in New England, her surname has not been found. It was reported to be ‘Green’ by Elizabeth (Oviatt) Browning (see Sources), but from other records this has been proved not true.

There is an active investigation that she might be Phoebe Cooley sister to Benjamin Cooley another early Springfield family. In Benjamin Cooley’s will he mentions "my cousen Sikes land ..." and there is a Phoebe Cooley bp. 10 Nov 1609 and a Benjamin Cooley bp. 25 Feb 1615/6 at Tring, Hertford, England.

Richard & Phebe were probably born before 1619 for a couple of reasons: first Phebe had her last child, James, in 1651. If she was in her early 40's that would put her birth about 1610. Richard also asked for release from Training on 24 Sept 1661 due to age and weakness; if he was in his early 60's that would make his birth about 1600.



  1. Records Church of Dorchester in New England: 1636 – 1734, by George W. Ellis, 1891, p4-5, 135
  2. Vital Records of Cambridge Massachusetts to the year 1850, by Thomas W. Baldwin, 1915.
  3. A Genealogical Dictionary of the First Settlers of New England, before 1693, by James Savage, 1862
  4. The Cooley Genealogy, Chapter IV of Early Springfield and Longmeadow, Massachusetts with Special Reference to Benjamin Cooley, Pioneer, by Henry A. Wright
  5. Hendrick Sykes and Allied Families, by M. Elizabeth (Oviatt) Browning, Hendrick and Sykes genealogy, with a the contention that Phobe is Phobe Green, which she is not. Location: Springfield Historical Library, Springfield, MA, Case X 929.2 H38+B
  6. Did Benjamin Cooley’s Sister Phebe Marry Richard Sikes of Springfield, Massachusetts, proving both born Tring, Hertford, England, by Eleanor Cooley Rue, 2000. Paper in possession of the Sikes/Sykes Families Association.
  7. The Great Migration Begins: Immigration to New England 1620-1633, by Robert Charles Anderson, 1995, p809-10
  8. Springfield Families, by Thomas B. Warren, 1935, Complete list of all early Springfield, MA families.
  9. Sikes/Sykes Papers, by George Dimmock, Life time collection, to about 1920. George Dimmock collected genealogy information on many families including Sikes's. Includes a unpublished Sikes genealogy, about 1,200 sheets. NEHGS Library, Boston, Mass.
  10. Sykes/Sikes Papers, by William Sykes, Last entry about 1960, William Sykes from East Cleveland, OH collected 40 notebooks of data on the Sykes/Sikes family before he died, Vol 32 is missing. NEHGS Library, Boston, MA
  11. History of Springfield, by Henry M. Burt, 1898
  12. Colonial Justice in Western Massachusetts, by Joseph H. Smith, Court records as recorded by John Pynchon from 1685-1711
  13. The Sykes Genealogy, Descendants of Richard and Phebe Sykes, by Henry M. Sykes, Collected data up to his death in 1911. A handwritten Sykes Genealogy in three parts: Richard (male lines only), Increase, & Victory, Connecticut Historical Society Library, Hartford, CT
  14. Index to Hampshire Records of Birth, Marriages and Deaths, 1638 - 1696, by William & John Pynchon, Transcribed 1933, Privately kept by William and John Pynchon for towns in and around Springfield, Mass.
  15. Probate Records, Hampshire County, by Susan Canney, 1994, Transcription of three Sikes wills from the Hampshire County Probate Court Records, Northampton, MA RootsWeb's WorldConnect Project "Canney/Peckham Genealogy"

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