From the book Caleb Sheldon Butts
Aylesworth and His Descendents by Owen Aylesworth
Our immigrant ancestor came to America prior to 1679 but the
exact date has been lost in history. Opinions seem to prevail that he left
England because of the religious situations involving Charles II. The family in
England was, according to tradition, adherents of the Cromwell Party and some
were officers in his army.
It is possible that he married first in England and had a
daughter there in 1677. Noted in the records (Ref. 9c) is an account of one
Arthur Aylworth whose daughter, Mary, was christened on May 29, 1677 in
Thornbury, Gloucester. Later in Arthur Aylsworth and His Descendents in America
we notice a reference to "The Aylsworth Register" & a list of his children that
does not mention a Mary, but later in his will he calls her his eldest daughter.
(Ref. 10) Could he have married there and on the trip to America his first wife
died? This is the only record of an Arthur in England that could be our
immigrant ancestor, discovered so far. Some day history will reveal the answer.
The first record of the immigrant is found in a petition
(Jul. 29, 1679) to King Charles II (1660-1685) signed by Arthur Aylworth &
forty-one others of Narragansett praying that he: "Would put an end to these
differences about the government thereof; which hath been so fatal to the
prosperity of the place; animosities still arising in peoples minds as they
stand affected to this or that government." (Rhode Island and Connecticut both
claimed jurisdiction of Narragansett.) One of the signers of this petition,
Richard Smith Jr., was from Gloucester and a Major in Cromwell's army. A
possible enforcement of the theory that Arthur was from Gloucester, England.