Family Card - Person Sheet
Family Card - Person Sheet

NameBernard CAPEN 811
Birth Dateabt 1562
Birth PlaceEngland
Death Date8 Nov 1638
Death PlaceDorchester, Massachusetts
Immigr Date1633
Freeman Date25 May 1636
Freeman PlaceMassachusetts Bay Colony
Reside1 PlaceDorchester, Dorsetshire, England
Reside1 PlaceDorchester, Massachusetts
Misc. Notes
“The Barnard Capen House, which stood on Washington opposite Melville Avenue, was probably built prior to 1637 . In 1909 Harvard professor Kenneth Grant Tremayne Webster rescued the house from demolition and moved it to 427 Hillside Street, Milton. This house is one of three surviving 17th century houses built in Dorchester along with the Blake House, now on Columbia Road and the Pierce House on Oakton Avenue.”

“The Bernard Capen House, which was moved from Dorchester to Milton in 1909 to prevent its demolition, hasn't been so lucky the second time around. The house, which tradition dates to 1636 and dendrochronology dates to 1658 is one of the few remaining 17th century houses in the Boston area. It is currently being dismantled to make way for a new house.

“Houses as old as the Bernard Capen House are like Vermeer paintings in their scarcity, which is why the loss of the Capen House hurts so deeply. Instead of a middle of the night robbery like at the Gardner Museum however, this theft has happened in broad daylight.  But the Town of Milton does have something in common with the Gardner Museum: in both cases security was completely inadequate. It is beyond me how the Town of Milton did not have some sort of landmark status attached to this property which would have forestalled demolition. As a side note, Vermeer painted the View of Delft and The Concert (which was stolen from the Gardner) about the same time as the Bernard Capen House was being built--contrast the Capen House to the buildings of Delft.

“The one ray of hope is that the firm carrying out the dismantling, Landmark Services, is documenting and storing the Capen House as it is taken apart in the hope of finding a buyer who wishes to rebuild the house. Estimated cost? $600,000, which stands in sharp contrast to the $295 it cost to move the James Blake House in Dorchester to its present location in 1895.” (

Brenard Capen and Joan Purchase are also ancestors of (Willard) Mitt Romney: (#7958 and 7959)
Birth Dateabt 1578
Birth PlaceEngland
Death Date26 Mar 1653
Death PlaceDorchester, Massachusetts
Immigr Date1633
Marr Date31 May 1596
ChildrenJames (~1598-)
 Ruth (1600-)
 Susanna (1602-)
 Dorothy (~1608-)
 Elizabeth (~1610-1678)
 John (1612-)
 Honor (~1616-)
Last Modified 3 Sep 2012Created 1 Dec 2017 using Reunion for Macintosh
New England genealogy files of Robert J. O’Hara, automatically output by Reunion for Macintosh. For additional genealogical data in other formats, including specialized lists of immigrant ancestors and notable kin, please visit my main genealogy page: For information about many of the localities mentioned here please visit