The Cole family in America

  The following are excerpts from "The Descendants Of James Cole Of Plymouth, 1633" by
               Ernest Byron Cole (The Grafton Press, 1908) :

"The earliest information obtained of James Cole, whose name stands at the head of the family in America, dates from 1616, when he was living at Highgate, a suburb of London, England. He is spoken of as a great lover of flowers, and it is probaly due to this fact that he became acquainted with and married Mary Lobel, a daughter of the noted botanist and physician, Mathieu Lobel.
James Cole and Mary Lobel were married in 1624. Their first children, James and Hugh, were probably born in London. They came to Saco, Maine, in 1632, and the following year, 1633, located in Plymouth, Mass., where he was admitted as freeman the same year. He was known as a sailor. His name appears upon the tax list of Plymouth in 1634; Jan. 2, 1636, he had a grant of ten acres of land; Jan. 2, 1637, the court deeded him seven acres of land to belong to his dwelling house. Three acres of land probably included all the land on the south side of Leydon Street, from the vorner of Warren Street to the westerly line of the lot opposite the Universalist Church. His dwelling stood on the lot next below the Baptist Church. He was the first settler of and lived upon what is still known as 'Cole's Hill,' the first burial ground of the Pilgrims. This land probably included the ground upon which rests Plymouth Rock.

Soon after his arrival at Plymouth he opened the first inn or public house of Plymouth, and one of if not the first, public house in New England. This house was kept as a public house by him and his son James until 1698."

 James Cole, the jolly innkeeper

The following is an excerpt from "Saints and Strangers - Being the Lives of the Pilgrim Fathers & Their Friends, with Their Friends & Foes"von George F. Willson (Parnassus, 1945):

"James Cole soon opened an ordinary on Cole's Hill, just above Plymouth Rock, later removing his casks and bottles to more ample quarters in Winslow's house, formerly Brewster's, conveniently situated in the very center of town, at the corner of the Street and the Highway. At the same time, one of the Fortune group, Francis Sprague, said to have been of 'ardent temperament,' obtained leave 'to keepe a victualling on the Duxburrow side,' having his license suspended for a time the next year for 'drinking overmuch' and tolerating too much jollity. His son John was a spark off the old flint, it appears, and spent hours in the stocks for 'highly misdemeaning himself in the house of James Cole of Plymouth, near unto or on the evening before the Sabbath Day, in drinking, gameing, and uncivill revelling, to the dishonor of God and the offense of this govment, by his gameing and bringing of his mare uncivilly into the parlour of James Cole aforesaid.'"