William6 Foster was born in Cambridge,Suffolk, Massachusetts September 28, 1746. He married Grace Spear September 29, 1768. . He was in London, England, April 8, 1783, the date at which letters patent were issued to him authorizing certain changes in his coat of arms. He was a prominent merchant and public spirited citizen of Boston about the time of the Revolution.
The following extract from the Minutes of the Selectmen of Boston (October 31, 1768) illustrates the dawn of an anti-slavery feeling in Massachusetts:
.The Several Constables of the Watch directed, by the Selectmen, to be watchful of the Negroes and to take up those of them that may be in gangs at unseasonable hours: Zachary Johonnot, Esq., Messrs. Nathan Spear, William Foster and others, enter their Complaint with the Selectmen against John Willson, Esq., of the 59th Regiment of Foot for practicing on their Negro servants to induce them immediately to enter into a dangerous conspiracy against their Masters, promising them their freedom as a reward,... read more