Sunday, November 20, 2016

Mayflower pure

I have been at this stuff now since 2009 (the blog started in 2010). In that time, I have run across a few Mayflower lines. I have run across many that are not so linked.

Now, think back to the time of Dr. Frank. That is, the 300th anniversary. BTW, Calvin Coolidge participated, as did a lot of other of the New England elite. We can expect that the 400th will be even more fun (if each town celebrated, we are talking decades of partying). Also, we would like to remind everyone of the 200th which is as important: just as the pilgrims crossed the sea, so too did many of the descendants, as pioneers, pass along the prairie (there was a poem to this effect).

So, with respect to the 300th (plus/minus, okay, a few years), there were organizations started. Of which, one acknowledged the Mayflower folks. We have their annual recognition coming up this week (hence, this post's timeliness). I just found out that early on only descendants of the males were allowed. But, think of those who could not join, for any number of reasons.

In fact, one of these would have been Dr. Frank. At least, for his paternal side, it is "pure" with respect to the Mayflower. That is remarkable. We are talking 300 years of non-association even though there were close calls.

As an aside, because there was some aura involved, many may have tried to flim-flam the Mayflower folks in order to get in (you know, human nature). So, the Mayflower organization got defensive (more below). Yet, they lost reason, too.

Below, I will briefly look at two examples. As well, we can propose various measurements. And, to make it worthy of attention, the most remote would get the prize. Why just celebrate almost there?

Closeness? There are many ways this can happen. A sibling might have married a Mayflower descendant. Or, as I like to see, the step-sibling situation is very important (lots of these due to early deaths and remarriage of a partner). Want to know why? Well, we'll get there as an upcoming The Gardner Annals (Vol III, No 1) will expand upon the topic. Let's just say that genes are not solely where it's at. Rather, memes (in a more full sense) do more to carry civilization (and, this year, we ought to have learned all sorts of lessons).

So, here are a couple of examples.
  • On the Blessing (1635) were two young women. They were sisters. One married Richard More (Nutfield Genealogy). Now, this is being used due to the 300th time frame. None of the More descendants would have been able to celebrate. Why? He had not been identified. Now, the other sister married a New Englander who was of the time of Thomas and Margaret. They have lots of descendants; one of these is "Mayflower Pure" as far as I can see now. We will go into this further. This split is early. As is known, there would be intertwining of families all through U.S. (and colonial) history.   
  • Out on the western prairie there is a lonely grave. It belongs to a New Englander who was a pioneer in several states. And, one of his brothers and one of his daughters are already on the roll (as in, their descendants are on the roll). Why not this guy? Well, the effort has been made. I will write this up in The Gardner Annals (down to about three generations ago). Quite frankly, the attitude, as I experienced it, was that snootiness was more important than recognizing one's ancestors (John Alden, by the way). So that observation is another motivator for this post. One set of circumstances may be a contributing factor, too. You see, in one generation, a girl's (actually, she was an infant) mother died (the mother was a daughter of the one with the lonely grave). The girl's father remarried. The father died. But, the step-mother didn't want the child. So, the uncles and grandparents raised her. She was an only child. Now, when the girl married (by the way, she was a graduate of Monmouth College), she had a girl. Then, the mother dies young. The father was off somewhere with the railroad. So, this girl is raised by her elderly grandmother. Before the grandmother died, she arranged for the girl to be adopted by friends. She well remembered that day as she was 10 years old. Also, she wrote this up for her own daughter. And, granddaughters of this woman are still here. One is terminally ill with cancer. I did not tell that to the Mayflower person who seems to not reason properly (yes, it's all documented - I blame genealogists who ought to re-examine themselves; by the way, we'll help with that). And, again, we can show association with someone of this line who is cousin of a Mayflower pure cohort. That is, there were splits early. Splits could happen anywhere along the temporal line. And, along the line, there were close calls (hence, pure). This example applies to the 200th. You know how many people were buried along the trails going west? Does anyone in New England care? 
So, let's introduce a Mayflower pure metric. Then, those who are not of such lines can quibble among themselves about who is closest. To me, perhaps, the furthest away might be more worthy of a crown. Going years and years and generations and generations without getting touched is a remarkable feat.

Many marriages through the years included newcomers. Usually, that would have an impact on possible Mayflower association. The closer to now that this happens, the greater the impact.


For the 400th, the society could look to identify some of these folks. What I have seen is that if there is no descendant who is around to apply to an organization, then the person gets ignored. I like how Heather (Hunter relates to the first bullet) identifies the siblings in Generation 1.

BTW, we started a forgotten series here: John Tylly, Joseph and Ann, the almost forgotten, and more.

As an aside, one of the first oversights that I found (2009 timeframe) was in a family book. Yes, this book is acceptable. In one generation, one son is noted as moving away from the area. You know. He was only a little to the west, but somehow there was no connection. But, then, I know of a generation where two siblings were out west (left coast) with their sister-in-law (a widow) in the same area. Yet, no connection.

Me? I have no qualms or motivations other than research being done well and to the extent that we can. My people are all mid-1800s. My bit is to keep the fire under those who go back further. Keep things respectful as well as honest.

Remarks: Modified: 12/18/2016

12/18/2016 -- Article about subject published in The Gardner Annals, Vol. III, No. 1.


  1. Here, here! I so agree. Being from those that connect a bit farther down the tree to George Soule, and likely others this sounds great. I find myself suggesting to those I meet when I hear a Mayflower name encouraging them to search. Thank you for your pure research!

  2. The General Society of Mayflower Descendants is considering a membership level similar to "Friends of the Mayflower", for those in-laws, cousins, adopted children, etc. who do not qualify as descendants. There are several state societies (Maine is one) who already offer this membership with pins, etc. My state society (New Hampshire) is considering this type of membership, prompted by a member with several adopted children.

  3. Great to hear. I have wondered why there was, in general, no interests in what might be considered Associates. Thanks.