Our Garrett family originally came from Bradford Abbas, Dorset – a village on the Dorset/Somerset border. The Garretts are first mentioned in the parish records of Bradford Abbas in 1539. The last male Garrett in Bradford Abbas passed away in 2006. Quite a number of the Garretts from Bradford Abbas moved to Yeovil, Somerset – only a few miles away.
Many of the male Garretts from Bradford Abbas were skilled thatchers (roofers) while others worked as agricultural labourers. In the 19th century many of the women of Bradford Abbas worked as glovers (leather glove sewers).
William Garrett left Bradford Abbas for Newfoundland in the late 1820s. He married Diana Denty of Salvage in 1829. William remained in Salvage and was buried there. Many of his descendants moved to Port Blandford around 1905. Others moved to Traytown, Grand Falls, Open Hall, and Burnside. One branch moved to Everett, Massachusetts in the early to mid 1920s.
Mark Garrett of Bradford Abbas also moved to Newfoundland sometime between 1851 and 1861. Mark was William’s 2nd cousin twice removed. Mark raised his family in Fox Cove (now Templeman), Bonavista Bay. His son later moved to St. John’s, where some of his descendants still live.
There have also been other Garrett families recorded in the Newfoundland records. At this time, I do not know where they came from before they show up in Newfoundland. One well known Garrett was Samuel Garrett who built Cabot Tower and the Four Sisters houses on Temperance Street. As well, there was a Jonas Garrett in Bay de Verde during the mid to late 1800s.
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