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BRIEF MEMOIR OF THE LIFE OF JOHN CROKER Who Was Born At Plymouth In 1673.

Written By Himself ...

 I was born on the eighth of the twelfth month, in the year 1673, in the town of Plymouth, in the county of Devon: my father was of the family of the Crokers of Lyneham, being by birth one called a gentleman; and he married Anstice, the daughter of Nicholas Tripe, a shopkeeper at Kingsbridge, in that county.
They were both early convinced of the blessed Truth, and stood boldly for it in the time of persecution, many times to the loss of their goods and imprisonment of their bodies
... my father, who was kept a prisoner sometime at Exeter, forty-four miles from home, and my mother was at the same time a prisoner in the Bridewell at Plymouth. ...
In the year 1686, some Friends of Plymouth being about to remove to Pennsylvania, and I being willing to go with them, my father and mother concluded to bind me apprentice to a Friend, one John Shilson, by trade a serge maker, but who also professed surgery; ...
[LONG ACCOUNT OF HIS TIME IN AMERICA AND ADVENTURES ON RETURN]
... and I set myself at work in my elder brother's trade, being a serge weaver; and to combing of wool I went, and earned six or seven shillings a week by my work, which brought me in money for a time.
It was not long before my father bought an estate in the county of Cornwall; he was a tobacconist, and it being war time he laid down all business, and retired into the country, and lived in a house with my elder sister, who was married to Francis Fox, a shopkeeper at Germains, where my father and mother remained until their death, and then my eldest brother went thither...
Soon after this period, (viz. about the year 1695,) the Lord was pleased to deprive me of my dear and honourable mother, who was in her day a noble woman for Truth, and who retained her integrity to God, and love to Friends to the end: I doubt not but she resteth in peace with the Lord.
This was a trying time to me, and it made an impression on my very countenance. I then retired into the country to my father, who was soon after brought to his bed by reason of a sore distemper in his feet. So I waited on him, and to keep myself from idleness and get a little money, I put forward some small business, which was spinning of tobacco, my father's former occupation....
I now began to think of a settled life, and I had cast my eye on a virtuous young woman, the daughter of John and Margery Peters, of Minver, in the county of Cornwall. ... Now being come to the twenty-second year of my age ... we were united. ...
[A Brief Narrative of the Life of John Peters by Thomas Gwin of Falmouth (1709)...
His body was interred the thirteenth of the Seventh month, 1708, at the burying ground of our Friends at Minver.] ...
Thus, for about three years I passed my time, in the enjoyment of a tender and affectionate wife, who truly feared the Lord, and with whom I had great comfort; and we were a strength and rejoicing to each other. But at length it pleased the Lord to take from me my dear wife in child-bed, in the year 1699. ...
I spent two years a widower... we had the company of our friend Elizabeth Gates ... I returned with my father and friend Elizabeth Gates to her father's at Horsham ... The Yearly Meeting in 1702 approaching... we might be married soon after ... So we came down into Cornwall, took a house, and settled at Liskeard ... and my father Gates, happening to die about the same time, there seemed to be a want of some person in his room.
So, after nine years, having had four children, whereof three were living, we gave notice of a sale of our shop and household goods, and soon disposed of the sam ... we left the country, [in the Third month, 1711;] being only myself, wife, and three children, a friend J. S., [removed to Sussex]
[About a year after his removal into Sussex, he wrote a letter to his sister, Tabitha Fox, (formerly Croker,) widow of Francis Fox, of Germains, in Cornwall; from which the following is an extract:]
Horsham, the 20th of Ninth month, 1712. Dear Sister, My desire is.... I conclude with our true love to thee and thy children, hoping that, as they grow in years, they may grow in the fear of the Lord. ... John Croker.
[NOTES ... his son Charles, probably the eldest of the family ... We had two sons at home... and departed this life, the twenty-ninth of the eleventh month 1727, at Horsham, in the county of Sussex, aged very nearly fifty-five years; and was buried in Friends' burying ground at Horsham, the first day of the Twelfth month.

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