"Bradstreet, Endicott, Dudley, Bellingham"
Simon Bradstreet
Public DomainSimon Bradstreet - Credit: New York Public Library Digital Collection

Like John Endicott and Richard Bellingham, whom we have already met, Simon Bradstreet (1604-97) and Thomas Dudley (1576-1653) were governors of the Massachusetts Bay Colony. Bradstreet departed from Lincolnshire, England in 1630, settling first at Boston, then at what is now Cambridge (then Newtowne). Deeply involved in the colony’s organization and politics from the outset, he served for six years as its secretary before being elected commissioner in 1644, a role he shared with Hawthorne’s ancestor William Hathorne. He became governor in 1679, remaining in post for seven years and then being re-elected for a second three-year term in 1689. In contrast to the other names listed here, he was reasonably moderate.


Thomas Dudley set sail for Massachusetts in 1630 on the Arbella, alongside John Winthrop. He was the chief founder of Newtowne and the builder of that colony’s first house. He served four year-long terms as governor in 1634, 1640, 1645 and 1650, in which he distinguished himself with the more-than-typical harshness of his policies.