Tuesday, November 27, 2012

What we know

Context: Gardner Questions and Answers plus the Gardner FAQ

Note (02/27/2024): See Current status

Note (03/20/2023) -- See these posts for an update: Square one?; Old, and new, planter. This post will be updated along with the FAQ.

Note (06/24/2019) -- given that this is seven years old and that we know more (see Remarks, this date, below), this post ought to be updated.

--- original post ---   [see comment in bold, and square brackets]

We'll start with Dr. Frank's work and the Great Migration sketch (including a wiki counterpart) as part of the foundation. From there, we'll build a sketch that has support. From this, we'll start to fill in the pieces in a reasonable fashion. Where things are conjectural, of course, this will be noted.

Aside: All progress comes from testing hypotheses [we will look at what was assumed; and, see the alternatives, and build a new view with support] which are framed from a good basis. Too, there is always the mainstream. That off the mainstream is not, by necessity, quackery. Of course, the smell test is useful when other means don't exist for proper analysis.

We'll summarize the Dr. Frank and Great Migration material, as one task. [both of these had one Thomas; let's track how this story came to be through the centuries.] However, to set the tone of the overarching guideline, please consider the following as a list of key items.
  • - [A] Thomas [Gardner] was put in charge as Overseer of the Cape Ann venture, at least, that part related to planting on the new soil. [Which Thomas Gardner?] This implies several things, such as that he was known to Rev. John White and the Dorchester Company, that he had a good character, that he capable of carrying out the plan, and a number of other things. We'll expand upon these as we go along with our efforts to describe Thomas as the quintessential American, albeit a little early for his times. 
  • - [So a Thomas was here] Thomas was referred to as 'Mr' in a London meeting in 1629 which, again, suggests several things, such as that he came from a good family, that he was educated, that he had social stature (but we could bet that he had a large physical stature and a character that was bigger than life), and a lot more. We'll collect more information about this and what it might mean. 
  • - Thomas brought his wife and family which means that he was committed. [At that time, there would have been three boys] Of the Cape Ann crew (old planters), he and Margaret were the exception. And, their resolve is proven by their children and their descendants. Of course, collecting information about this is an on-going effort. Another committed individual was John Balch who brought his wife. Many Balchs are descendants of Thomas through his daughter, Sarah. 
  • - Thomas became a freeman later than he could have which implies several things, such as that he was effective in his own manner during the period before he signed up, that he decided to join in order to participate in a larger scope and to take care of things that needed to be done for the community, that he compromised for the well-being of his children and more. 
  • - (07/12/2015) See Remarks, this date, on project exploring records found in Sherborne, Dorset regarding the marriage of Thomas Gardiner and Margaret Frier (and more). 
In short, we're talking about a story that ought to have wide interest if done properly.

That Thomas was above history is a known fact. What we want to capture is the spirit of the remarkable pair who survived troubling times and who left a definite legacy that needs to be studied and documented. Lessons from their, meaning Thomas' and Margaret's, lives are applicable in today's society in ways that we have not even begun to address.

Taking on the task of introducing history to Thomas is one task of the Thomas Gardner Society. That was one motivation behind the Backbone series.


02/27/2024 -- Add link at top to latest status post. 

03/20/2023 -- Put the notice about coming updates at the top. 

03/13/2023 -- See "New not old planter" post with regard to research findings. Thomas and Margaret have children registered in England until 1633. 

06/24/2019 -- We have started to update the FAQ and will be renovating our sites. With the 400th coming up, plus several years of research accomplished, it is time to pull together a cohesive view some of which will be printed. There is a very long ToDo list that will be published and updated so that others can help us with our tasks. Focus will be on content related to Thomas Gardner, Cape Ann, subsequent events, and much more; plus, we will keep configuration issues in mind which deal with the continual concerns related to technology and information presentation.

09/25/2018 -- Recently the Profile for Thomas Gardner on WikiTree changed to only have the two wives. This was due to research and discussion to which Gardner Research contributed. Earlier, there was a post that summarized the issue and accomplishment: Margaret, anew. Thanks are extended to all who made this update possible. The Profile is managed by the Puritan Great Migration Project sponsored by the NEHGS, publisher of the Great Migration books. So, Sherborne, as John said (see this page for images of documents).

07/12/2015 -- Okay, turtle speed. But, we get there. Announcing a new project: Sherborne, Dorset. No doubt, it is about time. When finished with the data collection and analysis, we will present the strongest story (the prerogative of the family) that the facts, and abductive reasoning, will support. As such, we hope to demonstrate some very much needed research viewpoints.

04/07/2015 -- We have more questions than answers (research raises both).

03/12/2015 -- What we know implies that there are things that we do not know (so, we'll cover both; albeit, unknown unknowns lurk).

03/03/2015 -- The 1933 book is on-line. See Zouch Phoenix.

09/29/2014 -- As of this past week, we know that a couple, Thomas Gardner and Margaret Friar, married in Sherborne, Dorset in 1617.

03/28/2014 -- See Vol. IV, No. 1 for a discussion of the movement from Cape Ann to Salem.

11/13/2013 --  Phippen would be part of the slate fill.

11/06/2013 -- While working on the next Beacon issue, I ran across some books. The one by Staloff was timely; imagine, I was wondering why the backbone series? Has the talented set ever allowed the lessors to have some semblance of a good life? Oh, you say yes? Winthrop, et al, were against this from the beginning. The stalwart of what could be (or could have been)? Thomas Gardner, of course.

01/24/2013 -- We know a whole lot. We ought to map the unknowns to what we know. Then, unknown unknowns will start to fall out. Sound like fun?

12/24/2012 -- Thomas, unlike Conant, was not overshadowed in the world of being. We'll spend some time characterizing this fact and what it means to reasonable folks.

11/27/2012 -- We need to tell the negative tales too, such as Rev. John's disrespect of those who put their lives and well-being on the line and more. The Maypole allusion grates several ways. Poor Thomas had to deal with three Johns: White, Endicott, and Winthrop. 

Modified: 02/17/2024

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