Select Fuller Miscellany

Here are some Fuller stories and accounts over the years:

Early Fuller Wills

In Kent

Date Name Place
1558 John Fuller Deal
1558 Joan Fuller Westwell
1568 John Fuller Canterbury
1576 Guy Fuller Maidstone
1580 John Fuller Tenterden
1592 James Fuller Wittersham
1592 Beatrice Fuller Wittersham

n East Anglia

Date Name Place
1553 William Fuller Nedging (Suffolk)
1563 Hugh Fuller Nedging (Suffolk)
1575 William Fuller Redenhall (Norfolk)
1578 William Fuller Wetherden (Suffolk)
1587 Richard Fuller Nedging (Suffolk)
1591 William Fuller Bildeston (Suffolk)

Thomas Fuller, Church Writer

Thomas Fuller was one of the first men to make a living by writing, no mean feat since he wrote during the tumultuous years of the English Civil War and the Restoration.  He would later remark, with some exaggeration: "All that time I could not live to study who did only study to live."  In actuality, he got on well with men on both sides, loved by Charles I on the one hand and by some of the men who manoevred Charles' death on the other.    

A genuinely amiable man, Fuller took as his motto Paul's words to Timothy: "Let your moderation be known to all men, the Lord is at hand."  Because of his moderation, fellow Royalists accused him of lukewarmness. In reply he asked: "Why should Peter fall out with Thomas, both being disciples of the same Lord and Master?"  Although the Puritans imprisoned and questioned him, his good humor and clever replies won him quick release.

Fuller's fame rested chiefly on two books, A Church History of Britain and Worthies of England.  These and other books were larded with pithy sayings such as: 

"Two things a man should never be angry at - what he can help and what he cannot help;"


"There are two kinds of people, those who do the work and those that take the credit.  Try to be in the first group.  There is less competition there."  

Samuel Fuller of the Mayflower

In 1608, a band of Puritans left England for Protestant Holland and settled in Leyden.  They remained there until 1620 when they decided to emigrate to America.  Samuel Fuller, a doctor, formed part of the company that embarked from Southampton on the Mayflower.  He left behind his wife to care for their young child. But his brother Edward and wife Ann joined him.

Upon arrival at Plymouth Rock, Samuel was a signer of the Mayflower Compact, along with the other adult male settlers.  He did what he could to relieve those settlers stricken with scurvy and disease.  However, nearly half of the settlers died during that first disastrous winter.  Samuel's brother Edward and his wife Ann were among the dead.  They were buried in an unmarked mound so that the militant natives would not know how many had died.  Edward was survived by his son Samuel whom Dr. Fuller took into his home.

In 1623 Bridget Fuller took passage on the Anne and came to Plymouth.  Four years later they had a son they named Samuel who later became the Rev. Samuel Fuller of Middleboro.

Fuller himself became ill and died during the epidemic that struck the Plymouth colony in 1633.  In his last will and testament he forgave the indigent of doctor's fees yet owed, bought gloves for many of the colonists, and bequeathed the very cloak off his back to a needy person.  Some of his letters are preserved in a collection called William Bradford's Letterbook.  He was survived by his wife and son, as well as several children entrusted to his care on the death of their parents.    

Ezekiel Fuller

Ezekiel Fuller of the Isle of Wight, Virginia was born around 1675.  While his origins are unknown, the earliest surviving document places him in Virginia in 1703.  A carpenter and prosperous farmer, he married Deborakh Spivey and named her and his twelve children in his 1722 will.  From those twelve children, the Fuller surnmame spread out across the South.  Many families with southern Fuller lineage can be traced back to Ezekiel.

Mad Jack Fuller

Mad Jack Fuller was the squire of Brightling Park in East Sussex.  At twenty two stone, he was a larger-than-life character.  He loved eating and drinking and talking loudly, and he had a heart of gold!  He put up a weird and wonderful collection of buildings.

The strangest of all was his 25-foot high pyramid tomb in Brightling churchyard.   Legend has it that in order to gain permission to erect his pyramid in the churchyard, the vicar asked that Jack Fuller move the local pub to a new location.  He was concerned that too many village folk, including the bell ringers, were spending part of their Sunday at the pub.

Jack Fuller died in 1834.  One tale handed down is that he was buried at a fully set dinner table with a bottle of claret in hand, dressed for dinner and wearing a top hat!

Some Sayings of Buckminster Fuller

"Dare to be naive," his motto in many of his speeches and writings.
"Don't fight forces, use them."
"Nature is trying very hard to make us succeed, but nature does not depend on us.  We are not the only experiment."
"The most important thing to teach your children is that the sun does not rise and set.  It is the Earth that revolves around the sun."
"God is a verb."
"When I thought about steering the course of "Spaceship Earth" and of all humanity, I saw most people trying to turn the boat by pushing the bow around.  I saw that by being all the way at the tail of the ship, by just kicking my foot to one side or the other, I could create the low pressure which would turn the whole ship." 

Alexandria Fuller in Rhodesia

Alexandria Fuller was the third of five children born to Tim and Nicola Fuller in England in 1969, during a brief attempt by her parents to live away from Africa.  "A bloody awful dreary place," her mother called England afterwards.  So it was back to Africa in 1972, to Rhodesia where the Fullers became absorbed, more and more, in that country's intensifying bloody struggle for independence.

They were not wealthy landowners, but hardscrabble tobacco and cattle farmers - although hardscrabble came with a cook, a gardener, a driver, and all you could possibly drink.  They were soldiers for white supremacy.  That was why they had moved from Kenya to Rhodesia.

In the comfort of their home, they were surrounded by barbed wire, thorn hedges, packs of dogs, and with loaded guns at bedside.  "We'd cheer when we heard the faint stomach-echoing thump of a mine detonating," Alexandria Fuller writes.  "Either an African or a baboon had been killed or wounded."

Gone to the Dogs is Alexandria Fuller's story of a girlhood growing up in Africa.

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