Thursday, October 28, 2021

Cape Ann to Patriot

TL;DR -- The Mayflower group has a database that identifies the passenger who arrived in 1620 that was the ancestor for a Patriot (SAR/DAR) whose descendants have applied for membership. At the same time, the Mayflower has a published database of applications that were successful and were dated before 1900. That gave us a chance to raise the issues of Lyman Porter, again, who is in the database as is one of his offspring and his brothers. Not to beat a dead horse, we then mention that we are working similarly with a focus on the Cape Ann entrants whose arrival will be celebrated in a mere one year and two months. 


This post is the 1st of a series about technology a lot of which has to do with computing. The pace of change has accelerated since the PC came on the scene in ways that are obvious. You know, there was progress before then which is embedded in the current modes if you know where to look. So, advances always come from prior work. One motivation for this series was to look at AI through the eyes of the IEEE Spectrum. We'll do that in the next post. 

For starters, lets look at a couple examples of late. The Mayflower group recently announced their new database which one can title Passenger to Patriot. That is, Patriots that are defined by DAR/SAR applications are linked back to their relations on the Mayflower. We, actually, have been doing that with the Cape Ann crowd. Whenever we see some who seems to have New England links, we follow those back. In doing so, many times, we get to a family who came early into Essex County of Massachusetts. And, we document the finding to an extent as well as push them on our research stack. 

Lyman Porter, Record
Now the other thing to note is that the Mayflower applications can be accessed on-line now. That is, those applications that were prior to 1900. A query will return information from Family Search who is sponsoring the query and which will show the line from the Passenger to the person used in the query. So, on doing a search, Lyman Porter is there, as is his daughter and some of his brothers. We will get back to this topic. Also, we will look further at the Mayflower Descendants database. 

Aside: The two ladies about whom our Alden post was done were in their 90s at the time. Both now? Deceased. But, they know. 

Needless to say, links from the databases of New England to those related to DAR/SAR work would be very helpful to researchers. All of us who have been around a while have seen several generations of approches over the past two and one-half decades. Some of these are still around. Some early ones are even now influencing current work. 

Our portal to truth ( is an example. Our development notes indicate how the effort has paralleled the general progress, in a minimal way. That is one key item to discuss. Too, we have had discussions about content versus configuration which too easily get conflated. In fact, the separation was dropped of late with the mania and approaches that we have seen associated with artificial intelligence (AI). That will be covered in the next post. 

It is comforting to see that those embedded enablers are still there. In fact, some old systems were identified last year due to COVID issues as they needed special attention using talents long gone away. On the other hand, we do need to keep honing systems, albeit we have seen the impact of loss of cultural views and any historical appreciation of why things might have been done the way they were. 

In other words, we learn from history; or, we are supposed to. Computing had just been too new to allow much analysis along that axis. That lack will be recognized in the next few years. How things will play out is not known, understandably. Yet, we can hope for the best in new technology as we stay in tune with progress while, at the same time, giving content the respect that it deserves. 

Postnote: Looks like the NEHGS did the work for the Passenger to Patriot. Nice to see the continuity of the work. 

Remarks: Modified: 04/19/2022

10/30/2021 -- Added the TL;DR.  

11/01/2021 -- Added the postcard from the NEHGS: Pilgrims to Patriots. 

04/19/2022 -- Message for today, from D.A.R. 247 years ago. (requires a login) 

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