Building status in the British Atlantic World: The gentleman’s house in the english West Country and Pennsylvania

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


In the mid-1680s, young John Elbridge set off from the Massachusetts Bay Colony bound for England. John’s family hailed from the port of Bristol, but some years previously his father had taken them to the Pemaquid settlement in the modern-day state of Maine and then, in the aftermath of King Philip’s War, on to Massachusetts. His mother and father had lately departed for Jamaica to manage a sugar plantation the family owned on the Caribbean island. Accompanied only by an older sister and leaving behind several siblings, John Elbridge traveled to England to serve as an apprentice to his cousin, merchant and customs official Thomas Moore of Bristol. He would spend the rest of his life in England’s second port city.1 A few years later, another young man arrived in Bristol. Born in Ireland to Scottish Quaker parents, James Logan had traversed the British Isles to join Bristol’s thriving Quaker community. There his father opened a school where James quickly developed a reputation as a teacher. Not long after, William Penn, founder of the colony of Pennsylvania, engaged Logan as his secretary to accompany him on his second voyage to America. Arriving in 1699, Logan took on myriad political and administrative tasks for the Penn family that eventually established him as a leading citizen in the American colony. Logan would spend the rest of his life in Philadelphia.2 The stories of John Elbridge and James Logan illustrate the transatlantic character of life in the British Atlantic world for those with the means or ambition to experience it.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationBuilding the British Atlantic World
Subtitle of host publicationSpaces, Places, and Material Culture, 1600-1850
PublisherUniversity of North Carolina Press
Number of pages22
ISBN (Electronic)9781469628066
ISBN (Print)9781469626826
StatePublished - Jan 1 2016

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Engineering
  • General Arts and Humanities


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