Land of Opportunity: Woman Recalls Family Ties to Perth Amboy and South Amboy

Ancestor settled in Perth Amboy, and his many-times great-granddaughter returns to the region that includes South Amboy, New Jersey.

| Good Old Days

A recent drive through The Amboys region (City of Perth Amboy and the City of South Amboy) in New Jersey reminded me of family ties with the area in this land of opportunity.

In the late 1600s, a respected merchant by the name of Grimstone Boude left England to set up a new business in the then-thriving colonial seaport of Perth Amboy. Like many other entrepreneurs of his time, Grimstone was a free thinker, morally at odds with restrictive English laws.

In 1753, Mary Boude, daughter of Grimstone's son Thomas, married Matthew Clarkson of Philadelphia.

They had a son, David Clarkson, who went down to St. Kitts, British West Indies, in 1787 to establish and run a shipping business dealing in mahogany and rum. At St. Kitts, he courted Ann Amory. This couple opted to live out their lives in the islands.

In 1810, their daughter, Mary, became the wife of Isaac Prince, whom she met when he was U.S. Consul at St. Bartholomew, French West Indies. Isaac, a native of Basking Ridge, New Jersey, had business interests that eventually took them to live in Philadelphia.

Among their many offspring was a daughter, Sarah. In 1854, while visiting a sister in Astoria, Sarah met and married Edward Hewitt, a native New Yorker.

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