Margaret (Christine) Otis

Female 1689 - 1773  (83 years)

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  • Name Margaret (Christine) Otis 
    Born 16 Mar 1688/89  Dover, Strafford Co. NH Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Gender Female 
    Died 23 Feb 1773  Dover, Stafford Co. NH Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Buried Pine Hill Cemetery, Dover, Stafford Co. NH Find all individuals with events at this location 
    • Grizzel Otis and her infant daughter, Margaret, were taken to Canada by their Indian captives and they were sold to the French. Grizzel was rechristened as a Roman-Catholic and renamed Madeline Warren.

      Margaret, was only 3 months old at the time of her capture. She was also christened as a Roman-Catholic and renamed, Christine. She was raised in a convent and at one point, the priests hoped that she would become a nun, but she refused to take her vows.

      On June 14, 1707, at the age of 16 she married Louis Le Beau (or Bau) a French-Canadian from Montreal. The marriage lasted but 6 years as Louis died at the age of 35, on Feb. 26, 1713. The union did result in four children; Louis (1708-1709), Marie Anne Christine Treffle (1710-1726), Marie Madeline (1712-) and Louis (abt 1713-1760).

      In 1714, an exchange of prisoners took place between the French and the English colonies. The young widow Christine met Captain Thomas Baker who was on a mission there to gain release of prisoners and became deeply interested in Madame Le Beau. Overcoming a strong opposition on the part of her mother, Grizzel, the priests and others, Captain Baker gained her release that she might come back with him to New England. Unfortunately, Christine was not allowed to take her children and despite attempts to recover them later on, was never able to bring them out of Canada.

      Christine renounced her Catholic faith and was rebaptized Margaret, The Congregational Church at Brookfield, MA wanted her to take back the name officially, but she continued to call herself and was known as Christine the rest of her life). Soon after her return, she married Captain Baker who lived in Northampton. On December 14, 1714, the townspeople had granted her a 60 acre plot of land in Deerfield (in praise of her noble qualities) provided she marry Capt. Baker.

      In 1717 the couple relocated in Brookfield, also near Northampton, farming and raising their family there until 1731, when misfortune again struck. With her husband's health and strength failing rapidly after the rigors of war, they sold their farm to a man who failed make payment for it, apparently after the deed transfer had occurred, leaving the Bakers, now with 7 dependent children, bankrupt and without means of livelihood.

      Thomas apparently moved around some then; Mendon in 1732, Newport RI in 1733 and, finally, Dover NH, Christine's birthplace, in 1735. There Christine petitioned the General Assembly for permission to keep a "public house, on the county road from Dover Meeting house to Cocheco Boome," She explained her family's current and past plights, "that her losses are trebled on her; first the loss of her house, well fitted and furnished and the lands belonging to it; second , the loss of New England substance in her last journey to Canada; and thirdly, the loss of her children in Canada, and now finally having a large family to support, and by the changes and chances of fortune here reduced to very low circumstances; with a husband past his labour...." Her petition was granted and she opened her "House of Entertainment" (in the Puritan sense} and kept it many years. She brought up and educated her children and "fitted them for useful and honorable lives" She died at "the good old age of 84 on Feb. 23, 1773.

      From the NH Gazette Obituary:
      DIED in Dover, N. H., Feb. 23, 1773, Mrs. Christina Baker, born in Dover in March, 1688-9. With her mother she was taken captive by Indians in June 1689, and carried to Canada, where she married and had several children. Her husband died, and in 1714 she was exchanged, afterwards marrying Capt. Thomas Baker of North Hampton, N. H. (should MA); in Hingham, Mass." (this is error, should be Deerfield, MA, In the town records for Dover, NH she is recorded as Christiana Baker

    Person ID I12958  Master File
    Last Modified 22 Apr 2012 

    Father Richard Otis,   b. 1626, Glastonbury, Somerset, England Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 27 Jun 1689, Dover, Stafford Co. NH Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 63 years) 
    Mother Grizel (Marie Madeline) WARREN,   b. 6 Mar 1661/62, Kittery, York Co. ME Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 26 Oct 1750, Montreal, Quebec, Canada Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 88 years) 
    Married 1685  Dover, Strafford Co. NH Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Family ID F7378  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart