The World of Grandpa Don

The Underwood Family Line 

Our Underwood line in America begins with Martin. One of his descendants married into the Bullen line of our ancestors.

This is their story, as I know it.

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In England

John Underwood (1585-1631) & Rachel Edwards (1586-1650) were my 10th great grandparents. Their son Martin emigrated to Massachusetts and continued the Underwood Line to me. Their son Thomas emigrated to Maryland and his descendants continue another branch of the family.

Martin Underwood is believed to have born at Great Bentley, Essex, England in 1596. Martha Fisk was born September 9, 1602 at Laxfield, Suffolk, , England. The two were married in England and had at least one child, Joseph, before they sailed to America.  

Mary Wilder is listed as being born at Shiplake, Oxfordshire, England in 1623. Her father, Thomas Wilder, supposedly died at Shiplake  in 1634 but her mother, Martha Higgs, died at Watertown, Ma. on December 13, 1658. It is unknown if the mother remarried and the new husband brought them to America or when and under what circumstances they made the trip. 

In America

The first Pilgrims who sailed on the Mayflower arrived at Plymouth Massachusetts in 1620, the place of the first New England settlement. In 1630 the town of Boston was founded.

Generation 1
Martin Underwood (1596-1672) & Martha Fiske (1602-1684)

Martin Underwood and his wife Martha Fisk and their son Joseph arrived on the Ship Elizabeth of Ipswitch on 30 April 1634. He was a cloth weaver and became a member of the Watertown Church. He was a declared a Freeman on 3 September 1634 and had been granted various parcels of land. His will mentions his wife's brothers as cousins.

It is not known if there were other children born in England or in America. They settled in Watertown, MA where Martin died on November 17, 1672 and Martha on May 6, 1684.

Some data from Great Migration: Immigrants to New England, 1634-1635, Volume VII, T-Y page 147.

Generation 2
Joseph Underwood (1614-1675) & Mary Wilder (1623-1658)

Joseph Underwood, born in England about 1614, married on May 16, 1676,  Mary Wilder. She was born at Shiplake, England in 1623 and was living at the time with her mother in Hingham, Ma. The couple settled in Watertown, Ma

We know of 1 child of this marriage; Joseph who was born in 1750. Mary died December 13, 1658. Some time after, Joseph married Mary Howe. Nothing is known of her or her family. There was at least one additional child, Hannah who is listed as being born in 1670.

Joseph, the father, died at Watertown on February 16, 1676.


Generation 3
Joseph Underwood (1650-1691) & Elizabeth Bond (1656-1729)

Joseph Underwood, Jr, born in 1650 at Watertown married in 1672, Elizebeth Bond, born in Watertown on November 30, 1656. She was the daughter of William Bond (1625-1695) and Sarah Biscoe (1626-1693) William and Sarah had immigrated from Suffolk, England and settled in Watertown.

Between 1673 and 1690 there were 8 children; Mary, Joseph, John, Elizabeth, Joshua, Jonathan, Sarah, and Hannah.

Joseph died at Watertown in April of 1691. Elizabeth died there on December 23, 1729 

Generation 4
Sarah Underwood (1687-1757) & John Bullen (1686-1757)

Sarah Underwood was born on February 9, 1687 and married John Bullen.  To follow this line of our ancestors see the Bullen Family.


Click to see ...
Underwood Relationship Chart

Click to see ...
Sarah Underwood Pedegree Chart

The information on this branch of the family was taken mostly from a number of family trees found at Although care has been taken to include reasonable information it is subject to further verification.

This line of our family, besides the Underwood surname, introduces us to the additional families of Wilder, Bond and Biscoe.


Cousins & Such

I have found cousins, or cousins have found me. These are connected through the Underwood line of Ancestors.


Stacy Underwood

"I realize that this may seem a little bit unconventional but, as I was researching an English ancestor in my family tree, a link was displayed to your website and I was able to see that we are related.  I guess I should introduce myself to you: “My name is Stacey Underwood of the Massachusetts and Vermont Underwoods, which were very distinguished throughout the history of our nation, and that of England, as well.  I currently reside in Colorado Springs, CO; and have been researching the family’s history since, 1999.  I would invite you to explore more of who you are and discover our family tree if, you so desire.”  You may find me on facebook, listed as Comsubgru Six."

Stacey is an 8th cousin 1X removed.  See Relationship Chart Stacy UnderwoodLodwick D Underwood


Lodwick D Underwood

Lodwick Underwood was introduced to me by his 2nd great grandson Stacy Underwood. (See above)  Lodwick D. Underwood (At right, 15yrs of age), 4th Vermont Infantry Regiment, 1st Vermont Brigade, 2nd Division, 2nd Brigade, IV & VI Corps, Army of the Potomac and Army of the Shenandoah, Middle Military Department. You can read about this remarkable man at Lodwick D Underwood. You will find there a list of Regimental Battles. The following information was sent by Stacy Underwood.

In every regimental engagement the 4th was involved in, Lodwick was there with the exception of the Battle of Funkstown, MD, and the New York City Draft Riots that took place while he was a POW. Additionally, Lodwick didn’t get to be present at the McLean House at Appomattox, VA when Gen. Robert E. Lee surrendered; as he had been transported from City Point, VA to the Armory Square Hospital, in Washington, DC.

Regarding the Battle at Savage’s Station, Lodwick (as recalled in a book written by his Company Sgt.) was involved in the tending to the wounded, while also; trying to gather the medical supplies and aiding those soldiers who were able to be moved from the field hospital to the trains nearby. All this was being done under heavy artillery fire, and what could not be moved or gather (material wise) was burned and destroyed in the face of advancing Confederate forces.

Pertaining to the Battle of Cedar Creek, Lodwick was wounded several times in the course of the same day. When he received his first wound, Lodwick was placed at the field hospital to recover but, walked out of the ward and rejoined the fight, when he was wounded for the second time. At present, the location of the wounds he received that day are not known.

The Pension Record and a list of Rutland County residents who were receiving disability and widow’s pensions, confirmed that Lodwick received $18.00 a month for the loss of his left leg, at the Breakthrough at Petersburg, on Tuesday, April 2, 1865. I also, uncovered some interesting facts that I did not know regarding that breakthrough at 4:40am on that fateful morning. I am trying to pin-point the commander of the Confederate Artillery Batteries that defended the Boydton Line section of the Petersburg Defenses that morning. This is of particular interest to me, as the 4th Vermont was the last Vermont unit to flow into the breach of that line, after trying to cover the movement of the Vermont Brigade. The sharpshooters of the 4th Vermont, were attempting to silence the Artillery Batteries before those same guns were turned on them—catching the 4th Vermont in a “Crossfire of Artillery and Musket fire.” This is when Cpl. Underwood lost his leg, and languished for hours before he could be removed from the battlefield.

As can be seen from the Relationship chart for Stacy Underwood, Lodwick Underwood was my 5th cousin 3X removed.


Gary Beach

Gary Beach was found through an DNA match .. A "distant cousin" and indeed he is that. Our nearest common ancestor is John Underwood who was born at Dorchester, Dorset, England in 1585 and his wife Rachel Edwards, born at Middlesex, England in 1586. They were my 10th great grandparents. Their son Martin emigrated to Massachusetts and was the patriarch of the Northern Underwood clan while their son  Thomas emigrated to Maryland to become the patriarch of the Southern Underwood clan. Gary wrote ...

 "I don't know about the Underwoods but other lineages I am related to from Alabama were Anti-Secessionts and served in the Union Army (1st Alabama Cavalry, USA). They were from the hill country of Alabama and were yeoman farmers and merchants so had no interest in slavery or seceding as was more popular in the lowlands. There are references on the internet about the "Free State of Winston" which was a county in Alabama alnog with other surrounding counties that were hotbeds of pro-Union sentiment (also internet references on 1st Alabama Cavalry, USA) . My grandmother and all her family who were from these areas were dyed-in-the-wool Republicans going back to the party of Lincoln. I thought it a bit unusual since in school we had been taught that southerners were Democrats (but that has certainly evolved over time!). Apparently it was more prevalent than generally taught, the South needed to justify the glorious cause and the North needed to condemn the defeated as rebels and it becomes generalized as a united South, so these became footnotes in history. WIth another branch of my family it was the same thing in Arkansas, where they served in the Union Army. History is probably more complicated and less black and white than commonly portrayed. Anyway, interesting where we come from and what we learn."

As I said ... we are very distant cousins ... 11th cousin 1X removed. See Gary Beach Relationship Chart.


Chrissy Horn

Chrissy Horn was also found through the DNA match and was also a distant cousin. Our closest common ancestor was Joseph Underwood who was born at Watertown, Middlesex Co MA in 1650 and his wife Elizabeth.. Bond born at Watertown, Middlesex Co MA 30 Nov 1656. They were my 7th great grandparents. Their son Joseph was an ancestor of Chrissy. Their son Joshua was the ancestor of Lodwick and Stacy Underwood while their daughter Sarah was my ancestor. 

Chrissy is my 8th cousin 1X removed. See Chrissy Horn Relationship Chart.

© Grandpa Don Plefka
aka Harry Ronald Cecora
January 5, 2010
Rev . Mar 11, 2013


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