1600  1605  1610  1615  1620  1625  1630  1635  1640  1645  1650  1655  1660  1665  1670  1675  1680  1685  1690  1695  1700  1705  1710  1715  1720  1725  1730 

1632: William Learned, Martha Ballard's ancestor, becomes a freeman in Charleston, Mass.
1634: William Ballard, Ephraim's ancestor, crosses the Atlantic on the ship Mary & John. Part of the Puritan Great Migration, William will settle in Lynn.

    1645: Jacob Moore (Martha's ancestor) is born in Sudbury, Mass.          1672: Mary Collins (Martha's paternal grandmother) is born in Middletown, Connecticut.          1697: Hannah Kidder (Ephraim's mother) is born in Medford, Mass.  1702: Elijah Moore (Martha's father) is born in Sudbury, Mass.      1715: Dorothy Learned (Martha's mother) is born in Sudbury, Mass. 

1722: Jonathan Ballard and Hannah Kidder (Ephraim's parents) marry in Billerica, Mass. Richard Moore and Ebenezer Learned (Martha's grandfathers) are Oxford selectmen.
May 17, 1725: Ephraim Ballard is born in Billerica, Massachusetts.

ca. 1726: Jonathan and Hannah Ballard move their family to Oxford, Massachusetts.  
            Apr. 12, 1633: Galileo Galilee stands trial for heresy after claiming that the earth revolves around the sun. Galileo recants his heretical theory.       1651: William Harvey publishes De Generatione Animalium, identifying the female egg's role in conception.
1652: Nicholas Culpeper publishes The English Physitian, or an Astro-Physical Discourse of the Vulgar Herbs of This Nation.
  1660: Thomas Syndenham names his tincture of opium and alcohol "laudanum," from the Latin for praise.
1663: Lous XIV of France chooses a male physician-not a midwife-to attend the delivery of his mistress.
1665: The Great Plague decimates London. 1671: Jane Sharp publishes the first English treatise on midwifery, in which she attacks man-midwives.      1687: Sir Isaac Newton publishes his Mathematical Principles of Natural Philosophy. 1690: Dutchman Zacharias Janssen invents the microscope.         

1716: New York city requires midwives to be licensed.
1718: England's Lady Mary Montagu introduces English physicians to smallpox inoculation, which she observed being performed by old women in Constantinople.

1724: John Maubray publishes The Female Phsician, in which he notes a trend toward physician-assisted childbirth, and away from midwifery. The English physician criticizes his colleagues for relying too heavily on instruments.     1733: the Chamberlen forceps' design is published, although it probably was sold secretly by the Chamberlens before that. 
  1607: English colonists first attempt (unsuccessfully) to settle Maine, at Fort George on the Kennebec River. Other English colonists found Jamestown, Virginia. 1614: Capt. John Smith explores and maps the northern New England coast. Smith will publish his Description of New England two years later and become an enthusiastic promoter of settlement.  1616: Plymouth Colony is founded by the Massachusetts Bay Company.    1628: A Fur-trading post is established at Cushnoc (now Augusta). Maine's first settlers, fur traders, act as go-betweens with the American Indians. In New France, to the north, traders and missionaries are the first to settle. 1634: John Winthrop writes that smallpox has killed off the local native American population and made the way clear for European settlement. 1636: Harvard College, the first in British North America, is founded. Martha Moore Ballard's brother will later attend the theological university.   1646: 14 women are hanged in Massachusetts and Connecticut after accusations of witchcraft.     Jun. 1, 1661: Mary Dyer, an English Quaker is hanged on the Boston Common for her religious heterodoxy.  1668: Massachusetts Bay Colony declares its authority and protection over Maine. Maine will remain a territory of Massachusetts throughout Martha Ballard's lifetime. Ephraim Ballard will live to see Maine separate from Massachusetts and become a state. 1672: King Philip's War erupts in New England as Chief Metacum leads the Narragansett Indians in a rebellion against an annual tribute demanded by the colonial government.
Nov., 1675: British soldiers massacre the Narragansett at their winter home in Rhode Island.
Aug., 1676: King Philip's War ends when Colonial militiamen kill Chief Metacum in battle and take his head to Plymouth, where it will be displayed for the next 20 years.     

1690: John Locke publishes Two Treatises of Government. Maine squatters will use Locke's arguments to challenge the Plymouth proprietors for whom Ephraim Ballard worked.

1692: Witch trials claim twenty lives in Salem, Massachusetts.
1698: Slave trading is legalized by the British Parliament, beginning the "triangle of trade" from New England to Africa to the Carribean Islands and back to New England.

1702: Queen Anne's War (called the War of Spanish Succession in Europe) begins.

1704: Sarah Campbell Knight travels from Boston to New York, becoming the first white woman known to have made the journey alone.

  Apr. 1713: The Treaty of Utrecht ends Queens Anne's War.        1731: Benjamin Franklin begins publication of Poor Richard's Almanack. Almanacs are common reading material in the colonies and early republic. The form of Martha Ballard's diary suggests that she may have used the dated page layout of an almanac at first.