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From: "Jeffrey Chace" <>
Subject: More about Owen Chase
Date: Tue, 14 Sep 2004 13:42:05 +0200

Here is an excerpt from an email I posted last year on November 14th.

The Enduring Shore: A History of Cape Cod, Martha's Vineyard, and Nantucket
by Paul Schneider

From The Enduring Shore, page 169

Over the Bar

Whoever actually hired the Essex crew, he didn't have far to look for a
first mate. Just a Pollard himself was promoted from mate to captain, one
of the boatsteerers from the previous voyage, Owen Chase, got Pollard's old
job of first mate. The twenty-two-year-old Chase was five feet ten inches
tall, had dark hair, and, like the new captain, was connected to several of
the founding English families of Nantucket. On his mother's side, his
lineage went back to Peter Folger, who came to Nantucket from Martha's
Vineyard to act as the original Coffins' and Macys' intermediary with the
native population.

Along with the Folgers on Chase's maternal side of the family tree are a
generous sprinkling of another original Nantucket family, the Swains. And
like Pollard, Chase was newly married to a woman from yet another old-guard
lineage, the Gardners. On his father's side, meanwhile, First Mate Chase's
roots went back to the founding of Yarmouth. His great-great-great-great-
great-grandparents William and Mary Chase settled there in 1638 after
living for eight years in the Massachusetts Bay Colony. What induced Owen
Chase's grandparents to move from the ancestral turf of Cape Cod to
Nantucket in the middle of the 1700s is not clear, though it may have been
related to an out-of-wedlock pregnancy that resulted in the birth of Owen's
father, Judah Chase. It apparently did not have anything to do with the
collapse of shore whaling on the Cape around that time, which prompted the
removal to Nantucket of more than a few other coofs, as off-islanders were
scornfully called. Owen's father was a farmer.

Jeffrey Chace

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