Ann Hutchinson Essay, Research Paper
Anne Hutchinson was born in July of 1591 and baptized July 20, 1591.Her mother Bridget Marbury the second wife of Francis Marbury and daughter of John Dryden. Her father was Francis Marbury and a spirited English Devin that was known for his puritan leanings and more than once received the censure of the established church. Frances Marbury had been locked up for three uncomfortable long periods of time. Rebellion against the status quo as he single-mindedly campaigned to raise the standards of preaching in the church. He repeatedly demanded rigorous training and improved education must be required for the clergy. He also insisted that the church must provide for the ordination of many more ministers to ensure a rector for every parish church.
Francis Marbary had three daughters of who only Susan born in 1585 wold survive him. Elizabeth his first child born in 1581 would live to the age of twenty in 1601. Mary was born was born in 1583 and was buried at Alford on Dec 29,1585. Some time around 1587 is when he married Anne?s mother, Bridget Dyrden. Before the arrival of Anne her mother had given birth to Mary in 1588 and in 1590 to John who was never mentioned again in either family presumably because he died at a very early age.
Baby Anne turned out to be Francis? most attentive audience in all of Alford. Anne had just turned fourteen when she was uprooted from sleepy little Alford the only home she had ever known. Alford was a country market town of several hundred hardy souls. She and her family headed south to London in 1605. For Anne life would never again be the same. First of all she was now set off from most of her compatriots who never left home and spent their whole lives seeing no more that two hundred other people. Then, she was now a resident in one of the great cities of the western world. For the first time in her life she could now see and taste exotic imports such as almonds, apricots, figs, lemons, olives, oranges, and peaches. There were also plants such as lilies from America, roses from Holland, and marigolds from France.
At the very beginning of 1611 Anne not yet twenty saw her whole world collapse around her. Her father died at the age of fifty-five. Then, on Sept 19,1611 just seven months after the death of he father the Marbury?s buried the youngest nine year old Daniel just a year after her fathers? death. Anne finally said yes to the man she had known since childhood. William Hutchinson, a wealthy sheep farmer and textile
merchant from her hometown Alford. The ceremony took place at St Mary Woolnoth on Aug 9, 1612 when Anne was only a month over twenty-one.
Anne had only a short time following her wedding to become accustomed to her new role as a keeper of her own menage. Amid all of her responsibilities she had to prepare herself for still another turning point in her life. Anne was pregnant with her first of fifteen children a short nine months after she had married. Edward was born and baptized on May 28,1613. There was much about the birth process and her own body that was unexplainable and beyond her control that she heavily relied on piety and prayer. This was to protect newborn and save herself. Pregnant every fifteen to twenty-three months Anne rejected the church dogma that women by the very act of giving birth were adding to the sin quotient of the world. Married for three years she had given birth to Edward now two years old; Susanna baptized Sept 4,1614 and was pregnant with Richard who would be baptized Dec 8,1615. She refused to believe the very act of giving childbirth, were adding to the sin quotient of the world.
Well Trained during her London years, she was a rarity in the small community. She was an intelligent experienced skillful midwife and nurse. Working beside her mother in the cosmopolitan capital, Anne had learned to compound herbal ointments, salves, and medicines, seeing for herself the effects of Bridget?s private recipes for nurturing the family back to health from the herbal secrets. When acting as a midwife Anne found herself cast into the almost god like role of Mother Natures earthly agent. She was responsible for delivering a miniature human being from the body of a still living mother. Mothers-to-be, wrathing with labor pains and in the grasps of death repeatedly put themselves in Anne?s steady and capable hands counting on her to call on skill rather than superstition or mumbo jumbo.
Anne went out among the sick because her sympathy and her active temperament drove her to do it. It was not a pleasant job nursing in all those ill-headed, ill-ventilated, ill-equipped houses. This was no matter for daintiness but for hand to hand grappling with all the unsavory details of personal service under the most inconvenient and distasteful circumstances.
The large and ever growing number of women who became Anne?s devoted followers attested to her conspicuous success in her chosen calling. John Cotton himself remarked that she was a ?well beloved in England a Alford in Lincolnshire.? Soon there were not enough hours in a week for Anne. She switched from one demanding role to another: wife, mother, nurse, midwife, and preacher.
The new preacher who was destined to exert great influences over her family was John Cotton. At first it was likely that Anne was too closely occupied with her home to pay much attention to the reports of John Cotton?s preaching. It was not long before her curiosity was aroused. Always a keen student of the bible, and brought up in an atmosphere of theological discussions. What she had heard of the Boston Vicar promised her the intellectual and spiritual food that she craved in her rural home. A trip to Boston with William was surely a frequent occurrence for a businessman like William who had plenty of connections in Boston. So may we imagine Anne riding on Stilton behind her husband bound to spend the weekend in Boston? They would be gone for at least one week. They would spend three days for travel and four to five days in Boston where Anne could listen to John Cotton?s supplemental sermons. The communion of her spirit of God meant more to her than doctrine. By the spirit she lived.
The Hutchinson?s set sail for America in the summer of 1643 on the same ship vessel that had brought John Cotton the year before. They felt safer because the good ship Griffen had proved a safe carrier for so many of their friends. She was of three hundred tons burden and could accommodate about two hundred passengers. On this trip the Griffen and her companion ship together brought only two hundred passengers. They brought a hundred heads of cattle that John Winthrop had asked to be sent over.
The trip was inconvenient and inspite of the cramped quarters all on board had a blessed sense of freedom. The whole long trip usually took from fifty to seventy days. Among the whole company no one talked more brilliantly than Anne Hutchinson or expressed more convictions. She soon found herself the center of a little court that stimulated her quick tongue to voice what ever her quick mind conceived. Thus one day in June of 1635 eleven ships arrived and news came from England in intervals perhaps a week during the good weather. The Hutchinson?s were well known when they landed and entered Boston society under the wing of John Cotton.
William Hutchinson was promptly admitted to membership in the Boston Church. To surprise of both William and Anne her admission to the Church of Boston was delayed, though only for one week. On Nov 2, her name was also inscribed on the role of the Boston Church. Inside of two years Anne found herself at the center of everything that was happening in Boston. She was the most popular woman in the Colony. She was more resorted to for counsel and advice than any of the Ministers. The reason for her popularity came from both within and without. The fact that the right person introduced her into the society of the village capital made all the difference in her popularity. Anne, the new comer was sponsored by John Cotton and enjoying not only his partial courtesies and his personal friend ship was sure to receive plenty of attention from those who considered themselves the best people in the town.
It must be noted, however, that there was always an important morality that did not come under Anne?s spell such as John Winthrop, father of the colony was not enthusiastic about her. Reverend John Wilson, Pastor of Boston Church also remained outside the circle of her influence. Perhaps he listened to Zechariah Symms or that he was hurt by her outspoken devotion to his associate John Cotton. More likely the antagonism between Wilson and Mrs. Hutchinson was due to their temperaments, Which were enough alike to make the differences more rasping.
Anne brought many topics out into the open. She gave woman a chance to express them selves. She herself never stopped talking and it is no wonder that the woman drew a new life from her vigorous strength that was so generously expanded. Her meetings were popular. Here was something new, a brake in the routine during the middle of the week. They were thrilled. Anne?s meetings were the social event of the colony just like they were before she left her homeland.
Anne taught a religion of love, as contrasted with the established doctrine of the law and judgement. Her meetings were the social event of the colony. The intellectual stimulating meetings was held at her house. Her house was too small for all that wanted to get in. The overflow listened at the windows and the doors. Her method of opening the meeting was with a summary of the sermon from the previous Sunday. Each week the strength and range of her criticism increased due to her beliefs.
During the May election Anne was now in the thick of a fight that concerned not only the reputation of herself but also for her dearest friends. Wheelwright was under conviction for sedation and though he had been given a chance to retreat, she knew that he would not do so. Her political and social alley, Governor Vane, also walked under a cloud that was constantly growing darker and darker. John Cotton her third defense was keeping himself safe from direct sensor only by his moderation and his unfailing gift for the answer that turns away wrath.
The first move made by the Hutchinson?s was to revive the petition signed by sixty members of the Boston Church and presented at the meeting of the court. At that time it had been turned down as groundless and presumptuous and then seemingly forgotten. Now Mrs. Hutchinson, Vane and others decided that the petition should be put out before all the people of the May election. It was a form of modern referendum that they sought to institute. When they feared that Vane might be put out of office they determined to introduce the petition before the election of officers. The effect of this defeat on Anne would only make her party work harder.
When Vane left Boston in early Aug. 1637 Anne lost her strong civil supporter. On Aug. 30, there was held the first council of the Congregational Churches in America. It was called the Synod and was organized by the clergy for the purpose of bringing the Antinomies controversy to an end. The Synod opened with a prayer by Shepard, a minister who fell only a very little short of Anne?s requirements in grace. The conference was a twenty-four day controversial dissipation.
Anne recognized perfectly that she was on the eve of a battle, but as she felt no fear for herself. The very fact that she was shorn of the support of Vane and that Cotton was acting as if he had something on his mind. Brother Wheeler was momentarily expecting sentence gave the buoyancy as if she were alone. Her feeling was exactly that stupendous and inescapable that urges one to witness faith.
The debate went on with ecclesiastical fervor and prodigality of expression for more than three weeks. Anne Hutchinson, looking in on for the support of her friends which remained. They heard blow after blow struck at her, her conduct, and her beliefs, though she was not called by name. The council decided that the women?s meetings were disorderly. They also decided that questions and discussions at the close of a sermon were out of order. These were a few examples of the blows made towards Anne Hutchinson at this twenty-four day meeting.
Now the court had banished Wheelwright. The attention was now turned immediately upon Mrs. Anne Hutchinson. The vote was that Anne be summoned for traducing the ministers and their ministries in the county. The interior of the church where Anne was brought to trial was a single room; small, bare, unlighted and unheated filled its entire seating capacity. Against Anne was Judge and Prosecutor, John Winthrop. There was also Deputy-Governor Dudly. The other magistrates, Endicot, Bradstreet,