Samuel Allen was the first royal governor of New Hampshire and served from 1692-1699. I previously discussed him here. Politicians being shady then as now, he actually served most of his term in England arriving in New Hampshire about 1698 or so. I wrote an article on the English origins of his wife, Elizabeth Dowse: "The English Origins of Elizabeth Dowse, wife of Governor Samuel Allen of New Hampshire," The New England Historical & Genealogical Register 162(2008):164-73. I had found their marriage license in London, which called her the daughter of Thomas Dowse of King's Somborme, in Hampshire. I found his will, and voila. I was always intrigued by her because the Gen. Dict. of Me. and N.H. calls her "an heiress" so I thought there was a possible royal line there. There still may be, but I never made the connection.
Samuel, on the other, has been a harder nut to crack. You can certainly place him in London, living in St. Michael's Cornhill parish when he married in 1672/73. He was a merchant. The marriage license calls him a bachelor, aged 30 (born ca. 1642), but his death record in 1705 calls him 70 (born ca. 1635). After his marriage his children are baptized at St. Helen Bishopsgate parish in London.
So where does Samuel Allen come from? Sadly, Boyd's Citizens of London offers no clues other than those cited above. As a friend suggested, I need to slog through the many guilds of London and look for apprenticeship records.
In any case, after making some money in London, he bought (or so he thought) the Mason Patent, which basically said he owned what is today New Hampshire. All of it. The deal was eventually shown to be fraudulent, but his heirs continued to sue for the Patent and eventually quitclaimed it 100 years afterwards to others who then also pursued it in court. His story appears in these works:
- Genealogical Dictionary of ME and NH by Sybil Noyes, Charles Thornton Libby, and Walter Goodwin Davis (Portland, 1939, reprinted Baltimore, 1988), p. 63.
- Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography edited by James Grant Wilson and John Fiske (New York, 1888) 1:55.
- The National Cyclopedia of American Biography (New York, James T. White & Co., 1906) 13:454.
- Biographical Directory of American Colonial and Revolutionary Governors, 1607-1789 by John W. Raimo (Westport, CT, 1980).
- Drake's Dictionary of American Biography by Francis S. Drake (Boston, James R. Osgood & Co., 1872, reprint Detroit: Gale Research, 1974).
- The Twentieth Century Biographical Dictionary of Notable Americans ed. by Rossiter Johnson (Boston, Biographical Society, 1904, reprint Detroit, Gale Research, 1968).
- A short narrative of the claim, title and right of the heirs of the Honourable Samuel Allen, Esq.; deceased, to the province of NH. . . (Boston, 1939 reprint, Mass. Historical Society No. 93).
- "The Case of Samuell Allen of London Esq. Governor of New Hampshire” by Elwin L. Page, Historical New Hampshire 25 (1970):47-53.