Mary Goodnow

Photo added by kdkb

Mary Goodnow

  • Birth 15 Dec 1673 Marlborough, Middlesex County, Massachusetts, USA
  • Death 18 Aug 1707 Northborough, Worcester County, Massachusetts, USA
  • Burial Northborough, Worcester County, Massachusetts, USA
  • Memorial ID 60210545

On 18 Aug 1707, Miss Mary Goodnow (daughter of Samuel Goodnow) and Mrs. Mary Fay and two of her children were gathering herbs in a meadow when they saw twenty or more Indian warriors stealthily approaching. They immediately ran for the fortified home of Samuel Goodnow.

Mary Goodnow, being lame from birth, could not escape her pursuers. She gave up. This selfless action allowed Mary Fay, who was six months pregnant, and her children to reach the gate and close it before their pursuers could overtake them. There was only one man in the garrison at the time; the rest were at work in the field. The savages attempted to break through the enclosure, but were repelled by the heroic defenders inside. Mrs. Fay loaded the muskets, handing them to her male companion who was able to maintain constant fire upon the enemy. Hearing the gunfire, the men in the field returned and the enemy retreated.

Mary Goodnow was seized and dragged into the woods.

That same day, the Indians surprised and took two men who were laboring in the field: Jonathan Wilder, a native of Lancaster, and Daniel Howe of Marlborough. Daniel was able to escape by seizing a rifle from one of the Indians and breaking it over his head; Jonathan was killed.

The next day Capt. Thomas Howe of Marlborough and about twenty men pursued the Indians. They were joined by another twenty or so men from Lancaster. They overtook the enemy, who now numbered thirty-six. A battle ensued in which two white men (John Farren and Richard Singeltary) and ten to twelve Indians died. The packs of the Indians fell into the hands of the whites. In one of them was the scalp of Miss Mary Goodnow.

A few days later her mangled body was found and buried on the spot. In 1889 the Town of Northborough erected a monument in remembrance of Miss Goodnow at the location of her murder and burial.


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  • Created by: Ken Nagel
  • Added: 16 Oct 2010
  • Find A Grave Memorial 60210545
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for Mary Goodnow (15 Dec 1673–18 Aug 1707), Find A Grave Memorial no. 60210545, citing Mary Goodnow Gravesite, Northborough, Worcester County, Massachusetts, USA ; Maintained by Ken Nagel (contributor 47221898) .